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Bellanvila Attidiya Sanctuary

Dehiwala, Colombo, Sri Lanka.
Location : Dehiwala
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Overview
BellanvilaAttidiya sanctuary that stretches over 372 hectare land in the commercial capital of Sri Lanka, is a vital wetland as well as a nesting ground for birds. This was declared as a sanctuary in 1990 in order to protect the numerous birds’ habitats it dwells. But this magnificent paradise is severely threatened by pollution and abuse of land by now.
168 bird species including 3 endemic species and 46 migrants have been recorded from the marsh, whereas inhabitants like Indian Shag, the Blue Breasted Banded Tail, the Ruddy Crake and migrants like Spot Billed Pelican, White Ibis, Painted stork and the elusive Glossy Ibis are recognized as rare species. Therefore the sanctuary makes an ideal destination for bird enthusiasts.

In addition, 71 species of butterflies, 44 species of fish, crocodiles as well as mammals like the fishing cat and jackals have also occurred here. But unfortunately, these figures have dwindled largely during recent times because of human intervenes. Land-filling for housing and cultivation, spreading invasive species such as wel-aththa(Annonaglabra) on the wetland ecosystem, increasing population of water hyacinth in the water bodies and releasing industrial effluents to the wetland, are few among those issues.

Accordingly, locating adjacent to a city has resulted in both ways on the BellanvilaAttidiya sanctuary. But reducing pollution in full play would allow the sanctuary to embellish the urban once again.
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