Ranganathittu - A Birdwatcher's Paradise

Ranganathittu - A Birdwatcher's Paradise:

A Painted Stork in flight at Ranganathittu
A Painted Stork in flight at Ranganathittu
It was spring season and definitely one of the best seasons for going out bird watching, we chose to drive to Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary over Kokkare Bellur. Early morning drive on Bengaluru-Mysuru highway was as amazing as always it used to be. After relishing the divine sunrise on the highway, we reached Ranganathittu BS by 8.30am which is about 2.5km from the Highway.
Sunrise at Bengaluru-Mysuru Highway
Sunrise at Bengaluru-Mysuru Highway
We were one of the first tourists here, so had a peaceful time in adoring the Mother Nature.
A mustering of storks along with Spoonbills
A mustering of storks along with Spoonbills
Ranganathittu is a designated Bird Sanctuary preserved and maintained by the Forest Department of Karnataka State. It was declared a wildlife sanctuary in 1940 after the ornithologist Dr. Salim Ali observed that the isles formed an important nesting ground for birds, and persuaded the Wodeyar kings of Mysore.
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
Sight of the BS
Every year thousands of birds migrate here from as far as Siberia for the purpose of nesting and fly back with their young ones later. River Cauvery flows through Ranganathittu forming many islets covered with trees, where the birds build their nests. Ranganathittu is home for both Migratory and resident birds, along with a float of marsh crocodiles and colonies of bats.
Marsh Crocodile at Kaveri river, Ranganathittu
Marsh Crocodile at Kaveri river, Ranganathittu
The sanctuary is best explored through boating where they take you very near to the birds nest. It was an amazing experience to spot over 15 different species of birds. Pelicans were spotted in great numbers; Painted Stork and Asian Open-Billed Stork were also in large numbers. Colonies of exotic birds like Great Egret and Eurasian Spoonbill were also found. Apart from these, we spotted Little cormorant, Black-Crowned Night Heron, Pied Kingfisher, Snakebird, Darter, Eurasian marsh harrier, White Spotted Fantail Flycatcher, and Pale Billed Flower Pecker. This dissimulation of birds is a must see for every bird enthusiast.
Pelican in flight
Pelican in flight
Birds of Ranganathittu
Pelican fishing at Ranganathittu
Pelican fishing
Painted Stork gathering sticks for building nest
Painted Stork gathering sticks for building nest
 painted stork in close encounter with Crocodile
A painted stork in close encounter with Crocodile
Asian Open-Billed Stork in their nest
Asian Open-Billed Stork in their nest
Asian Open-Billed Stork
Asian Open-Billed Stork
Great Egret at Ranganathittu
Great Egret
Great Egret in Ranganathittu
Closer view of Egret
Eurasian Spoonbill at Ranganathittu
Eurasian Spoonbill
flight of Spoonbills at Ranganathittu
flight of Spoonbills
Cormorant in flight
Cormorant in flight
Cormorant at Ranganathittu
Black-Crowned Night Heron
Black-Crowned Night Heron
White Spotted Fantail Flycatcher
White Spotted Fantail Flycatcher
Pale Billed Flowerpecker
Pale Billed Flowerpecker
Eurasian marsh harrier
Eurasian marsh harrier
In our earlier visit to the Sanctuary during October, we spotted different species of birds, Black Headed Ibis in large numbers, River Tern and Stone plover.
Black Headed Ibis
Black Headed Ibis
River Tern
River Tern
Best time to visit Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary:
Although November to June is the best time to visit Ranganathittu, but every season you can spot different species of birds. This means that round the year bird’s flock here.

Birds at Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary:
This place is termed as bird’s paradise for a reason; there is a long list of birds which come to this sanctuary,
  1. Spot-billed Pelicans
  2. Painted Stork
  3. Open-Billed Stork
  4. Black Headed Ibis
  5. Eurasian Spoonbill
  6. River Tern
  7. Cormorant
  8. Snakebird/Darter
  9. Great Egret
  10. Cattle Egret
  11. Little Egret
  12. Great Stone-Curlew/Great-billed Thick-knee/Great Stone Plover
  13. Black-Crowned Night Heron
  14. Purple Heron
  15. Indian Pond Heron
  16. Grey Heron
  17. Brahminy Kite
  18. Baya Weaver bird
  19. Large Pied Wagtail
  20. Grey Wagtail
  21. White-browed Wagtail
  22. Indian Cliff Swallow
  23. Streak-throated Swallow
  24. Pied Kingfisher
  25. White-Throated Kingfisher
  26. Stork-billed Kingfisher
  27. Small Green Bee-Eater
  28. Red-Wattled Lapwing
  29. Grey-Headed Fishing Eagle
  30. Crested Serpent Eagle
  31. Oriental Magpie Robin
  32. Great Tit
  33. Red-Whiskered Bulbul
  34. Purple-Rumped Sunbird
  35. Black-Headed Munia
  36. Eurasian Marsh Harrier
  37. White Spotted Fantail Flycatcher
  38. Asian Paradise Flycatcher
  39. Tickells Blue Flycatcher
  40. Slaty-backed Flycatcher
  41. White-cheeked Barbet
  42. Common Hawk Cuckoo
  43. Indian Roller
  44. Pale Billed Flowerpecker
 and the list goes on and on....

Although the Sanctuary is popular for birds, they are also home for fish eating Smooth Coated Otter, large number of Marsh Crocodiles, many species of Butterflies, colonies of Fruit bats and Indian Flying fox.

Tourist Information:

Timings 08:30 am - 06:00 pm
Entry Charges (Indian National) Rs. 60
Boating Charges (Indian National) Rs. 60
Car Parking Charges Rs. 30
Restaurant: Available
Washrooms: Available

How to reach:
Take a bus from Bengaluru - Mysuru and get down at Srirangapatna, take an auto from Srirangapatna to Ranganathittu BS which is a 4km ride.
Nearest major railway station is at a distance of 16km which is Mysore Railway Station (MYS); take a city bus from Mysore to Ranganathittu BS.
Nearest International Airport is Kempegowda International Airport Bengaluru
Taxi: you can also hire a taxi from Bengaluru or Mysuru for half day fare.

Summer treat for birdwatchers at Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary