Ramsar sites in India

Ramsar sites in India
Posted on 23-08-2023

Ramsar Sites and the Ramsar Convention: Preserving Vital Wetlands

The Ramsar Convention: An International Pact for Wetland Conservation

The Ramsar Convention stands as an international treaty dedicated to safeguarding and sustainably utilizing wetlands. Bearing the name of Ramsar, the Iranian city situated by the Caspian Sea where the agreement was signed on February 2, 1971, this treaty, formally known as the 'Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, especially as Waterfowl Habitat,' took effect in 1975.

Montreux Record: Monitoring Changes in Wetland Sites

Embedded within the Ramsar Convention framework, the Montreux Record serves as a registry of wetland sites featured in the List of Wetlands of International Importance. It identifies sites where alterations in ecological character have transpired, are ongoing, or are anticipated due to technological advancements, pollution, or other forms of human intervention. The establishment of the Montreux Record was the result of a recommendation made by the Conference of the Contracting Parties in 1990. Sites can be added to or removed from this record solely with the endorsement of the Contracting Parties within whose borders they are situated.

The Vital Importance of Wetlands for a Sustainable Planet

Wetlands play a pivotal role in maintaining the health and equilibrium of our planet, fostering various ecological and human benefits.

  1. Biodiversity Havens: Around 40% of the world's species either inhabit or reproduce within wetlands. Serving as critical "nurseries of life," these areas witness approximately 40% of animal breeding activities.

  2. Environmental Cleansers: Often referred to as the "kidneys of the earth," wetlands possess the unique ability to purify the environment by filtering out pollutants and contaminants.

  3. Climate Change Guardians: Wetlands assume a significant role in the battle against climate change, as they store approximately 30% of carbon from land-based sources, assisting in offsetting carbon emissions.

  4. Disaster Risk Mitigation: With their capacity to absorb storm surges, wetlands act as effective natural barriers, reducing the impact of disasters and safeguarding surrounding areas.

List of Ramsar sites in India

  1. Kolleru Lake, Andhra Pradesh: Kolleru Lake is one of the largest freshwater lakes in India, located in the state of Andhra Pradesh. It is an important habitat for migratory birds, especially during the winter season.

  2. Deepor Beel, Assam: Deepor Beel is a freshwater lake located in Assam. It is a Ramsar Wetland and supports a wide variety of bird species and other aquatic life.

  3. Kabartal Wetland, Bihar: Kabartal Wetland is located in Bihar and serves as a significant habitat for various migratory bird species.

  4. Nalsarovar Bird Sanctuary, Gujarat: Nalsarovar is a bird sanctuary and lake in Gujarat. It's a popular spot for birdwatching, particularly for migratory birds.

  5. Thol Lake Wildlife Sanctuary, Gujarat: Thol Lake is another important wetland in Gujarat that provides a habitat for various bird species.

  6. Wadhvana Wetland, Gujarat: Wadhvana is a freshwater wetland in Gujarat that plays a role in supporting diverse aquatic life.

  7. Sultanpur National Park, Haryana: Sultanpur is a national park in Haryana known for its rich birdlife and serves as a haven for bird enthusiasts.

  8. Bhindawas Wildlife Sanctuary, Haryana: Bhindawas Sanctuary is an important wetland in Haryana and supports various resident and migratory birds.

  9. Chandertal Wetland, Himachal Pradesh: Also known as Moon Lake, this high-altitude wetland in Himachal Pradesh is surrounded by stunning mountain landscapes.

  10. Pong Dam Lake, Himachal Pradesh: Pong Dam Lake is a reservoir in Himachal Pradesh, attracting a variety of waterbirds and fish species.

  11. Renuka Wetland, Himachal Pradesh: Renuka Lake is the largest natural lake in Himachal Pradesh and is revered for its religious significance.

  12. Wular Lake, Jammu & Kashmir: Wular Lake is the largest freshwater lake in India's Jammu & Kashmir region, and it serves as an important habitat for migratory birds.

  13. Hokersar Wetland, Jammu & Kashmir: Hokersar is a significant wetland in Jammu & Kashmir that provides vital wintering grounds for migratory birds.

  14. Surinsar-Mansar Lakes, Jammu & Kashmir: These twin lakes are revered for their religious and cultural significance while also supporting biodiversity.

  15. Tsomoriri Lake, Jammu & Kashmir: Situated at high altitude, Tsomoriri is a pristine lake known for its breathtaking beauty and ecological importance.

  16. Ashtamudi Wetland, Kerala: Ashtamudi is a large estuarine system in Kerala that supports diverse aquatic life and local communities.

  17. Sasthamkotta Lake, Kerala: Sasthamkotta is the largest freshwater lake in Kerala, playing a significant role in maintaining the local ecosystem.

  18. Vembanad Kol Wetland, Kerala: Vembanad is the longest lake in India and is vital for the state's ecology and economy.

  19. Tso Kar Wetland Complex, Ladakh: This wetland complex in Ladakh is important for both resident and migratory bird species.

  20. Bhoj Wetlands, Madhya Pradesh: These wetlands include a series of lakes around Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, and are home to various bird species.

  21. Lonar Lake, Maharashtra: Lonar Lake is a unique and ancient crater lake in Maharashtra, with a distinct ecosystem.

  22. Nandur Madhameshwar, Maharashtra: This bird sanctuary in Maharashtra attracts a variety of avian species.

  23. Loktak Lake, Manipur: Loktak is the largest freshwater lake in Northeast India, known for its phumdis (floating islands) and biodiversity.

  24. Bhitarkanika Mangroves, Odisha: Bhitarkanika is a mangrove ecosystem in Odisha that supports various species of flora and fauna.

  25. Chilka Lake, Odisha: Chilka is the largest coastal lagoon in India, providing a habitat for numerous bird species and aquatic life.

  26. Beas Conservation Reserve, Punjab: This reserve along the Beas River supports a range of wildlife, including birds.

  27. Harike Lake, Punjab: Harike Lake is a wetland and bird sanctuary formed by the confluence of the Beas and Sutlej rivers.

  28. Kanjli Lake, Punjab: Kanjli is a man-made wetland and bird sanctuary in Punjab.

  29. Keshopur-Miani Community Reserve, Punjab: This community-led reserve is significant for conserving biodiversity and supporting local livelihoods.

  30. Nangal Wildlife Sanctuary, Punjab: Nangal Sanctuary is home to various bird and animal species.

  31. Ropar Lake, Punjab: Also known as Rupnagar Lake, it's a man-made water body and serves as a habitat for waterfowl.

  32. Keoladeo Ghana National Park, Rajasthan: Formerly known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, it's a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a haven for birdwatchers.

  33. Sambhar Lake, Rajasthan: Sambhar is India's largest saltwater lake and attracts a variety of migratory birds.

  34. Point Calimere Wildlife and Bird Sanctuary, Tamil Nadu: This sanctuary is important for its resident and migratory bird populations.

  35. Rudrasagar Lake, Tripura: Rudrasagar is a lake with a palace in its center, situated in Tripura.

  36. Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh: Nawabganj is a bird sanctuary providing habitat to various bird species.

  37. Parvati Agra Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh: This sanctuary is situated along the banks of the Yamuna River and supports avian life.

  38. Saman Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh: Saman is a small wetland sanctuary with diverse bird species.

  39. Samaspur Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh: Samaspur is known for its resident and migratory birds.

  40. Sandi Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh: Sandi Sanctuary is situated around a man-made lake and supports various bird species.

  41. Sarsai Nawar Jheel, Uttar Pradesh: This wetland provides a habitat for waterfowl and other bird species.

  42. Sur Sarovar, Uttar Pradesh: Also known as Keetham Lake, this wetland is a haven for birdwatching.

  43. Upper Ganga River (Brijghat to Narora Stretch), Uttar Pradesh: This river stretch supports diverse aquatic life and bird species.

  44. Asan Conservation Reserve, Uttarakhand: Asan is a man-made lake and wetland serving as a habitat for numerous bird species.

  45. East Kolkata Wetlands, West Bengal: These wetlands provide important ecosystem services and support local communities.

  46. Sunderbans Wetland, West Bengal: The Sunderbans mangrove forest is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is home to the iconic Royal Bengal tiger and various other species.

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