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Lakshadweep

Tern
Sooty Tern Sterna fuscata ©Duncan Wright, USFWS

Birding Lakshadweep

Lakshadweep the smallest union territory of India, is a group of islands 200km to 440km off of the coast of Kerala in the Arabian Sea. Their total land area is 12 square miles or 32km². Ten of the islands are inhabited. Lakshadweep is the northern part of the erstwhile Lakshadweepa.

Lakshadweep officially consists of 12 atolls, 3 reefs and 5 submerged banks, with a total of about 39 islands and islets. The reefs are in fact also atolls, although mostly submerged, with only small unvegetated sand cays above the high water mark. The submerged banks are sunken atolls. Almost all the atolls have a northeast-southwest orientation with the islands lying on the eastern rim, and a mostly submerged reef on the western rim, enclosing a lagoon.

The Lakshadweep Archipelago forms a terrestrial ecoregion together with the Maldives and the Chagos. It has over 600 species of marine fishes, 78 species of corals, 82 species of seaweed, 52 species of crabs, 2 species of lobsters, 48 species of gastropods, 12 species of bivalves, 101 species of birds. Pitti Island, is an important breeding place for sea turtles and for a number of pelagic birds such as the brown noddy Anous stolidus, lesser crested tern Sterna bengalensis and greater crested tern Sterna bergii. The island has been declared a bird sanctuary.

The main islands are Kavaratti (where the capital city, Kavaratti, is located), Agatti, Minicoy, and Amini. The total population of the territory was 64,473 according to the 2011 census. Agatti has an airport where there are direct flights from Kochi, Kerala or Ernakulam (Cochin). Tourists need a permit to visit the islands; foreign nationals are not permitted to visit certain islands.

Contributor

Wikipedia

GNU Free Documentation License

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lakshadweep

Number of Species

Number of bird species: 101

(As at December 2018)

State Bird: Sooty Tern Sterna fuscapa

Useful Reading

* Field Guides & Bird Song

For a comprehensive list of recommended titles covering India as a whole - please see the main India page of Fatbirder

Reserves

Abbreviations Key

BS Pitti Island

Information

Satellite View

Pitti is the local name for bird... so means bird island. The island is low and arid and, lacking adequate anchorage points, of difficult accessibility. (There is another island with the same name in Lakshadweep which is part of the Kalpeni Atoll.) Pitti Island is 300 x 200 m in size and devoid of vegetation. It is an important nesting place for pelagic birds such as the sooty tern (Sterna fuliginosa), the greater crested tern (Sterna bergii) and the brown noddy (Anous stolidus). The birds nest side by side, but not intermixed, on the dry coral rubble. There is a seasonal pattern in the breeding period of the birds. Since it has no protecting reef surrounding it, the islet is periodically rinsed by wave action and there is no accumulation of guano on it.

Guides & Tour Operators

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Kerala Tourism

Tour Operator

The Lakshadweep island lie on the Arabian Sea. A timeless undiscovered treasure comprising 36 reefs and coral atolls - untouched and unspoilt. Very little is known about them and this adds to the sense of adventure for visitors…

Trip Reports

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CloudBirders

Trip Report Repository

CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.

2007 [02 February] - An ornithological expedition

PDF Report

An ornithological expedition to the Lakshadweep archipelago: Assessment of threats to pelagic and other birds and recommendations. The last ornithological survey of the archipelago was in 1990–1991 (Santharam et al. 1996). The present 2nd Pelagic Birds Survey from 12–16.iii.2006, a joint effort of ELA Foundation, Pune and Ecological Society, Pune together with Indian Coast Guard, was carried out after a lapse of 16 years. The first part of this survey focused on pelagic bird life off the western coast of India, in the Arabian Sea, and was completed in October–November 2005 (Pande 2005). Here we present the findings of the second lap of our survey, which was restricted to the Lakshadweep archipelago. Pitti Island, a part of the Lakshadweep archipelago, is an Important Bird Area (Islam & Rahmani 2004).

Other Links

Lakshadweep Wildlife

Website

Lakshadweep is also home to a diversity of bird species. Bangaram is the main island where one can see the birds. Sand piper, golden plover, green shanks and red shanks are few of the most frequently found Avi fauna species on Bangaram island..

State bird of Lakshadweep

Article

State bird of Lakshadweep – complete detail – updated. Description of State bird of Lakshadweep. Name of State bird of Lakshadweep is Sooty tern. Sooty Tern is a social bird. They found in large groups. Habit and habitat of Sooty Tern. They prefer tropical oceans, and some sub-tropical regions.