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Kumana National Park

Ampara, East Coast, Sri Lanka.
Location : Ampara
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Overview

 Kumana (Yala East) national park, renowned as a birds’ sanctuary, is adorned with lagoons, lakes and swamps. It is located in the northern part of the Kumbukkan Oya and 21 miles away from the city of Pothuvil. Even though the reserve is a habitat for the mammals like elephants, leopards, deer, and bears, the population of diverse species of birds gets the major attraction of visitors.

The area receives rain from north east monsoon from September to February and it swells the numerous lagoons and lakes in the park. Therefore the reserve hardly runs short of water though it is located in the dry zone of the island. This supports immensely for the extensive wildlife of the national park throughout the year. There are several tanks found here such as Kumana lake, Okanda Lake, Kiri Pokuna, Thunmulla Lake and few others. Most of these lakes are covered with lotuses and it manifests a fascinating view before us. The majority of birds’ habitats are found around the lagoons. There are six main lagoons lie in the Yala eastern region known as Okanda , Girikula , Bagura, Andaratala, Itikala, and Yakala lagoon. Apart from these lagoons, there is a mangrove swamp called ‘Kumana Villu’ that spread over 200 hectares and fed by Kumbukkan Oya (a half mile long narrow channel). Kumana villu is a significant ecosystem in which many water birds nest in May and June. Rare species such as Black-necked Stork, Lesser Adjutant, Eurasian Spoonbill, and Great Thick-knee are breeding inhabitants of the Kumana villu. During April–July myriads of birds migrate to the Kumana swamp area annually, and Malabar Trogon, Yellow-footed Green Pigeon, Red-faced Malkoha, Sirkeer Malkoha, Pacific Golden Plover, Greater Sand Plover, Grey Plover, Little Ringed Plover, Marsh Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper, Little Stint, Common Snipe, and Pintail Snipe are some common migrant wading birds of the park.
The outstanding feature of the vegetation in the park is its mangrove plant community. Kumbuk trees, Palu(Manilkara hexandra),  Ehela (Cassia fistula ), Burutha (Chloroxylon swietenia ), and fern species could also be seen here. 
You can make your visit to Kumana, an exciting experience as you could enjoy Camping, wildlife Safaris, and other adventurous activities except bird watching. 
 
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