Soon, lakes in western suburbs will attract birdwatchers

Birdwatching will not involve long-distance travel for residents of western suburbs any more. The Water Resources Department has expedited work on turning three large water bodies into eco-restoration spots.

The department had started work on restoring lakes in Korattur, Ambattur and Retteri two years ago. However, there has been long break in restoring lakes as the project is being implemented in a phased manner. Aiming to complete the work by the year-end, the department has accelerated work on three water bodies this month with a funding of Rs. 13 crore.

Theft and damage to footpaths are the issues faced by the department due to breaks in the project. “We have lodged a complaint with the police to prevent further theft or damage of the walkers’ track. We are providing kerbs on the pavement to prevent frequent damage and taking measures to avoid two wheelers on the bund,” said an official.

Workers are involved in building cement concrete blocks on the Korattur lake’s bund slope to prevent erosion on the lines of Porur lake. Brimming with water, the lake is attracting birds and has become a haven for birdwatchers all through the year.

In its detailed project report, Care Earth Trust, a city-based biodiversity research organisation, mentioned that nearly 40 bird species were sighted in these lakes, including common tailorbird, the purple-rumped sunbird and the Asian openbill stork, a migratory bird. To popularise birdwatching in these water bodies, the department now plans to add more bird nesting islands. Silt removed from the water bodies would be used to strengthen the bund and also provide islands, an official said.

Work is on full swing to complete the walkers’ track on the 3-km long bund in Korattur and Ambattur lakes. “We will also provide ornamental lighting, benches and create garden along the bund where residents can spend time,” said an official.

Measures are also afoot to plug sewage outfalls and remove the remaining encroachments in the lakes.

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