Over the last ten days, there has been much excitement among the residents of the Lower Ambalipura Lake area. This 7-acre water body, off Sarjarpur Main Road, is home to several species of birds through the year, but Painted Storks, one of Bangalore’s water birds, have been only ocassionally spotted here, singly or in pairs.
A Painted Stork at Lower Ambalipura Lake, March 2014, Pic: Sacha Greenwood
On 22nd May, five Painted Storks were spotted together.
Five Painted Storks at Lower Ambalipura Lake, 22nd May 2014, Pic: Rajesh Rao
It didn’t take long for the good word to spread (regarding the abundance of food at the lake!). On 28th May, the count reached fifteen and currently at least twenty-two Painted Storks, including juveniles, have been seen. This, apart from the more common birds like herons and egrets.
A Painted Stork catches fish at Lower Ambalipura Lake, May 2014, Pic: Sacha Greenwood
A Painted Stork and a Purple Heron at Lower Ambalipura Lake, May 2014, Pic: Sacha Greenwood
For most of Bangalore’s rain-fed lakes, the summers are a time when they dry out. Much of the Ambalipura Lake bed can be seen and water spots are shallow. Birds are able to stand on the lake bed and dip their beaks into the water to feed. Last year, a deepish pit was dug to collect water so that the fish could be saved. It seems that this year too, all the fish have got concentrated here, providing the ideal setting for a fish-eating party.
Do visit Lower Ambalipura Lake to watch the birds having a feast!