Magadi Tank — Reducing The Disturbance To Wintering Waterfowl

Vinaya Kumar Thimmappa
Bar-headed Geese in Magadi tank. The tank is multipurpose and villagers use it for all activities.

Madagi, a small village which is an hour’s drive from Hubli in North Karnataka. Every winter thousands (5000+) of Bar-headed Geese (Anser indicus) and other migratory species like common teal, comb ducks, etc. come to this tank from Central Asia and Europe. This year (2012), 50+ tagged Bar-headed Geese were recorded in the area.

The lake is not protected and is open from all sides. Villagers use this lake for washing clothes, vehicles and other activities.

The forest department has one guard during migratory season and none during other seasons. There is one watch tower. The forest guard has been provided with a birding scope (by North Karnataka Birding Association) and he shows visitors migratory birds. There is no fee for this and he has been doing an excellent job.

There needs to be a concerted effort in protecting this tank by minimizing disturbance. The picture indicates a JCB excavator in the background getting cleaned at the lake shore. The lake is multipurpose and we see people all round the lake washing clothes, cleaning vehicles, etc. Inspite of these problems, Magadi still remains one of the best place for Bar-headed Geese in South India.

Magadi village is in Shirahatti taluk, Gadag District, Karnataka. It is located 26Kms from Gadag, on the Gadag-Bangalore Road (SH-6).

A recent aricle about the tank in Deccan Herald.

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