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VEDANTHANGAL BIRD SANCTUARY

Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary is a 30-hectare protected area located in the Kancheepuram District of Tamil Nadu. The sanctuary is about 75 kilometres (47 mi) from Chennai on National Highway 45 (NH45), south of Chengalpattu. More than 40,000 birds (including 26 rare species), from various parts of the world visit the sanctuary during the migratory season every year.

Vedanthangal is home to migratory birds such as pintail, garganey, grey wagtail, blue-winged teal, common sandpiper and the like.

Vedanthangal is the oldest water bird sanctuary in the country. Vedanthangal in Tamil language means 'hamlet of the hunter'. This area was a favourite hunting spot of the local landlords in the early 1700s. The region attracted a variety of birds because it was dotted with small lakes that acted as feeding grounds for the birds. Realising its ornithological importance, the British government undertook steps to develop Vedanthangal into a bird sanctuary as early as 1798. This was established in 1858 by the order of the Collector of Chingleput.

The best time to visit this sanctuary is from November to March. During this time, birds are seen busy building and maintaining their nests.

Villagers near this sanctuary are very concerned about the sanctuary and its winged residents, and they have taken many serious steps to avoid disturbance to the flow of birds.