As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Basai wows birders with its rare avian finds

Bagish K Jha | TNN | Feb 8, 2016, 12.23 PM IST

Gurgaon: Basai has recently been in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons, with real estate eating up most of the lake that existed in the village and acted as a magnet for migratory birds. On Sunday, it was back in the news for the right reasons, as birders from across NCR hit the ground early as part of the annual Big Bird Day. They were there till late evening, recording details of all the birds they had managed to spot.

"The event is mostly organised in February and March, as the season is right for spotting water, migratory and local birds," said Abhishek Gulshan of Delhi Bird Group, an amateur body of birders which organises the event every year, in which birders spend the day counting the number of species spotted, number of birds of each species, their habitat, etc. This year's results will be published by the group on Monday on

Pankaj Gutpa of Delhi Bird Group said his team spent the day at Basai and nearby areas. Among others, they spotted species like the water rail, water pipit, cinnamon bittern, Baillon's crake, Indian scops owl, Indian courser, mallard duck, ferruginous pochard, Spanish sparrow, Peregrine falcon, bar-headed goose, greylag goose, moustached warbler. Sheila Chhabra, who lead the group at Basai, said the numbers were good, while adding, "But we fear that Basai, a natural wetland, may disappear in the coming years due to heavy construction around it."

"Big Bird day is a wonderful celebration of our avian friends through the dedication of an entire day to bird watching and recording the number of species sighted in the region," said Pankaj Gupta of Delhi Bird group adding that Big Bird Day was initially started by their group as an informal event held in February and March.

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