INTRODUCTIONRanganthittu Bird Sanctuary in Karnataka is situated in the Srirangapatna town of the Mandya district. Though it occupies a small space spreading over an area of 0.67 km , the sanctuary draws a lot of tourist attention for it is the favourite destination of both native and migratory birds. It is just 20kkms away from Brindhavan gardens in Mysore.
It is very much on the banks of the Cauvery River formed by a group of six islets which got its origin in 1700 during the construction of a dam across Cauvery river.Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary is of great interest to wildlife enthusiasts, nature lovers and bird watchers.
The credit for the establishment of the Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary goes to the renowned ornithologist-Dr. Salim Ali who during his survey of the birds of Mysore and laid the foundation for this in the year 1940 by persuading the Wodeyar kings of Mysore . Balmuri Falls a man made reservoir in the vicinity of the sanctuary is a must place to be visited.
BEST TIME TO VISITThe ideal time to visit the Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary is from October to May.
FLORAThe Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary is predominantly more of marshy grassland. Most of the area in the banks of the island is covered by Riverine reed beds.
Other flora of the Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary are Terminalia arjun (Arjun tree), bamboo groves,Pandanus trees,Eucalyptus,Acacia trees along with the endemic and threatened lily Iphigenia mysorensis of the family Colchicaceae.
FAUNASome of the common mammals seen here include Bonnet Macaque, colonies of Flying Fox and common small mammals like Indian Gray Mongoose, the monitor lizard and Civet. One of the common inhabitant of the riverine reed beds in this sanctuary is the Marsh Crocodile commonly referred as the Mugger Crocodile.
AVIFAUNAThe avifauna population of the Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary includes water birds like Painted Stork, Asian Open bill Stork, Common Spoonbill, Woolly-necked Stork, Black-headed Ibis, White Ibis, Lesser Whistling Duck,Teals,Sand Pipers Indian Shag, Stork-billed Kingfisher,Egrets,Cormorants,Oriental Darter,herons,The Great Stone Plover, River Tern, Streak-throated Swallows.
ACTIVITIESBoating facilities are also available at the sanctuary to enable the tourists for a ride along the river and the islets.
OTHER PLACES OF INTEREST
Maharaja's PalaceDesigned by the English architect, Henry Irwin, the Mysore Palace dominates the skyline of Mysore.The palace is illuminated on Sundays, public holidays as well as during dussehra celebrations when 97,000 electric bulbs are used to illuminate it. The palace presents a profusion of frescoes, floor mosaic, wood carvings, solid silver portals, ornate domes, arches, colannades and sculptures.
Brindavan Gardens19 kms north of Mysore is the famous reservoir Krishnarajasagarai.This dam is built across the river Cauvery.Just below the dam the beautiful Brindavan gardens are laid out. There is variety of fountains, illuminated at night by colourful lights. The musical fountain is of special interest which has spectacular harmony of water, colours and music.
SrirangapatnamSrirangapatnam which is at a distance of about 16kms away from Mysore is noted for its fort,Ranganatha temple, dungeons and museum,Tipu Sultans summer retreat Daria Dulat and his mausoleum, the Gumbaz.
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By AirBangalore is the nearest airport and is located 139 km away.
Ranganathittu is located 18 km away from Mysore.