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World Wetland Day Birding visit to Anawilundawa Ramsar Wetland

8 Feb

FOGSL arranged a special birding trip to mark the even of World Wetland Day 2014. The Anawilundawa Ramsar Wetland which is an important habitat for Wetland Birds has been the main destination of the tour. Following are some moments captured during this trip. Photo credit to Ajith Gamage and Sujeeva Gunasena.

Group Photo - Field Trip to Anawilundawa on World Wetlands Day - Copy - Copy






FOGSL team birding 2

FOGSL team birding

wetland birds 2

wetland birds


January lecture: Do butterflies Migrate..?

8 Feb

Not only birds, but insects too migrate. Dr.Michael Van der Poorten delivered the MigrantWATCH lecture in January on this theme.

Lecture - Butterflies of Sri Lanka with emphasis on their migration - Dr.Van der Poorten


zDr.Van der Pooten goes in to audience


zMigratory species 8


Welcome 2014 listening to ‘Dawn Chorus’

8 Feb

The new year 2014 has been dedicated to Small Island Nations. Inline with this, the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) has selected “Island Biodiversity” as its theme of the 2014 . Been an island, Sri Lanka is home for many unique species. The theme ‘Island Biodiversity’ is more relevant to Sri lanka. Birds of Sri Lanka too is an important part of the country’s biodiversity and perhaps the most interesting group of animals due to their attraction and their presence even on busy urban areas.

Hence FOGSL will align its 2014 programs under the theme “Birds of Sri Lanka: Splendour of Island Biodiversity”.

To start 2014 FOGSL invited all to Welcome the New Year listening to the ‘Dawn Chorus’ compose by Nature’s Musicians.

Welcome 2014 - listning to the Dawn Chorus

Following is an article published on Sri Lanka’s most popular English Newspaper – The SundayTimes taking the message to a wider audience..

In the soft dawn of a New Year, a sweet sound will steal your heart

By Malaka Rodrigo

For the many preparing to see in 2014 to the booming sound of rock bands and firecrackers the Field Ornithology Group of Sri Lanka has a counter-proposal: welcome the dawn of the New Year to the sweet sound of the dawn chorus. Birds are nature’s wonderful songsters and they sing every morning to welcome the day but their songs mostly go unnoticed due to our busy lifestyle. With all their skills, musicians and composers who have been inspired by the charms of birdsong have not been able to emulate the perfection of Nature’s melody.

Says FOGSL, there’s no better way to see in the New Year than by listening to our birds singing their dawn chorus, but if January 1 is disturbed by the sounds of crackers and you are feeling too sleepy from late-night partying to wake up in time to hear the birds, select any day of the first week of 2014 and listen to nature’s symphony to remind yourself of the need to be closer to nature.

If you listen to the dawn chorus in your area regularly you will notice changes in the melody as some birds intensify their singing during the breeding season. The best example is the well-known songster, the Asian Koel (koha), who starts singing its beautiful song to attract its mate around April.

The Oriental Magpie Robin (polkichcha) is another common songster that enriches the dawn chorus by singing from the highest point in the area. The birds start the day around 4:30-5 a.m. Get up early before sunrise and keep listening!

December Lecture: Migrants and other unique Northern birds

8 Feb

Northern parts of Sri Lanka has been declared as a unique avi-fauna zone with several bird species found only in these areas. Some of the star migrants such as Greater Flamingo are now mainly inhabit areas in Jaffna and Mannar; so it is indeed a unique birding experience. Vimukthi Weeratunga: well known photographer and environmental activist has delivered the 4th lecture under the MigrantWATCH program on December.

Migrants and other unique Northern Birds - Lecture by Vimukthi Weeratunga & Field Visit



Participants 4

Participatnts 5



World Wetland Day Birding Trip to Anawilundawa Wetland

30 Jan is the itinerary of the World Wetland Day Anawilundawa trip.. if anybody would still like to join, pls contact Kusum Fernando on 0777772716, 0712289022.

Itinerary – World Wetland Day Birding Visit to Anawilundawa Wetland

DAY1: Saturday, February 1st 
06.00hrs Leave Colombo campus
08.30hrs Birding at Chilaw sand spits
10.00hrs Stop for breakfast
12.00hrs Lunch at Sri Shan guest house
15.00hrs Birding at Mundal lagoon
18.00hrs Back to the guest house
19.30hrs Bird list & dinner
DAY2: Sunday, February 2nd 
06.00hrs Leave hotel to Anaivillundawa Wetland for birding
09.00hrs Come back for breakfast
09.45hrs Leave to Nawadankulama tank for birding
11.45hrs Come back to hotel and lunch
15.00hrs Leave hotel to come back to Colombo if time permits Birding at Munneswaram Tank
19.00hrs Reach Colombo campus

Total cost estimate Rs.3000/= with basic accomadation and food : includes  lunch, dinner on first day ,bed tea, breakfast,  lunch on second day and transport (EXCLUDES breakfast, on first day)

For further information Kusum Fernando 0777772716, 0712289022

World Wetland Day Field Visit to Anawilundawa Ramsar Wetland

Migration of Mammals – a lecture by Dr.Prithiviraj Fernando

26 Nov

The November monthly lecture “Migration of Mammals with special reference to Elephants” will be the 3rd lecture under the MigrantWATCH 2013/14.

Lecture - Migrations of mammals with special reference to elephant by Dr.Prithiviraj Fernando

The Mysteries of Migration – lecture by Prof.Devaka Weerakoon

23 Oct

There are plenty of secrets on bird migration Ornithologists trying to unravel. How does some birds fly tens of thousands of kilometers, how do they find the exact locations year by year..? These are only some mysteries. The National Bird Ringing Program initiated in 2005 has given some insights to the migratory birds of Sri Lanka. The recent Bird Ringing Camp was held at Bundala last week.

But it is not only the birds – there are other migratory animals ranging from giant whales to tiny butterflies. Sri Lanka could also be in path of a Dragonfly migration.

ProfDevaka Keerthi Weerakoon will deliver a lecture on Mysteries of Migration of birds and other species as part of lecture series organized inline with MigrantWATCH 2013/14. An update on National Bird Ringing Program’s latest ringing camp and a progress of MigrantWATCH 2013/14 will also be shared. The Thalangama Tank birding session will be held on Sunday 27th.october from 6.30am onwards.

FOGSL welcome you all for these events…!!

The Mysteries of Migration - by Prof.Devaka Weerakoon - 26th.Oct