A greater flamingo was spotted in Visakhapatnam by birdwatchers last weekend, this is the first time in past 3 decades. Making it a unique detection of the ongoing season. A solitary greater flamingo was found at the NTPC ash pond area by two birdwatchers- Janardhan Uppada and Harsha Vardhan K.— last Sunday.
It was a very infrequent sight. Initially, we mistook the bird for a painted stork. But when we zoomed in our lenses, we were amazed to see a greater flamingo. In the recent past, we never sighted earlier in this region,” Mr Uppada expressed.
The recent discovery has thrilled the birdwatchers. The solitary bird might have to roam out of the flock and lost its way while on the journey to its habitat. The long-necked and long-legged bird was last seen in Vishakapatnam in the 1980s. According to birdwatchers.
Usually, birds are always on the lookout for muddy land for nesting. We are planning to keep a track of the movement of this species. If the trend continues, we can conclude that the greater flamingos may be looking for an alternate food source here, Vikram Penmetsa, a member of Vizag Birdwatchers Society, expressed.
The NTPC ash pond and its neighbouring wetlands draw more than 15 avian species, some of which migrate in the winter such as Eurasian Curlew, little stint, plovers and redshank. The recent spotting of greater flamingo in the area has brought the place in the limelight and highlighted the need to protect the water bodies of Vishakapatnam. They are very important nesting zones for birds.
Residents of the west and sub-Saharan Africa, Mediterranean regions, south-west and south Asia, greater flamingos reside in mudflats and shallow coastal lagoons or freshwater marshlands. They feed on molluscs, blue-green algae and microscopic organisms.