Balugaon, Jan 4: The annual bird census began in Chilika Lake on Thursday morning.
Sources said, as many as 21 teams comprising 5-6 ornithologists in each have been deployed in the counting of the migratory and domestic birds in Chilika lagoon.
The surveyor teams will also include officials of Chilika Development Authority (CDA), experts from Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), Wild Odisha, Frow With Nature, Elephant Trust and members of various social organisations.
The census is underway at five ranges namely Satapada, Rambha, Balugaon, Tangi and Chilika. As many as 18 teams are undertaking the survey work in terrestrial areas and rest are engaged in aquatic areas.
The Chilika Lake, spread over the Puri, Khurda and Ganjam districts of Odisha, is the largest brackish water lagoon of Asia.
Notably, the practice of counting birds has been exercised every year in Chilika. Migratory birds mostly come to Chilika from beyond the Himalayas every winter — from northern Eurasia, the Caspian region, Siberia, Kazakhstan, Lake Baikal and remote areas of Russia and neighbouring countries. They start their homeward journey before the onset of summer.