Thattekad Bird Sanctuary or Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is a well preserved bio diverse habitat that is home to many resident and migratory birds. It is situated at about 44 kms from Cochin International airport. Located on the northern bank of Periyar River, the bird sanctuary is spread over an area of about 25 kms. Dr. Salim Ali, known as ‘The Birdman of India’, compared this place to eastern Himalayas for its rich bird habitat.
Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is must-visit place, especially for bird watchers. You get to see many rare species of birds that you may never have seen. You also home stays available near the sanctuary. A detour to this place on the way to Munnar will not be regretted.
We kindly request our guests to respect the pristine environment. Please do not litter or feed the animals. In order for you to enjoy a safe trip, please stay a little away from the animals and do not cause them any indirect harm.
Thattekad is situated at Njayapilli at Kothamangalam in Ernakulam district. Thattekad which means ‘flat forest’ in Malayalam, is a low land forest decked out with continuous tropical evergreen/semi-evergreen forests and deciduous forests. Spread across 25 sq. kms., this sanctuary is the biggest bio diverse land in Kerala.
More than 500 species of birds are found here. This area enjoys a moderate climate throughout the year. It is better to take a guide for bird watching. The guides make sure that the tourists get to see as many species as possible as they take you to the hotspots. It’s a wonderful place to visit for passionate photographers. Local migratory birds can be seen after September. Birds from Himalayas migrate to this place during winter. So the best season for watching birds is between October and March.
For a short trip, the best time is to visit in the morning. In a 3 to 5 hour walk, one is assured to watch at least 50 to 60 species of birds. A ride in the canoe along the canal makes it possible to watch birds from close proximity. A serious bird watcher can stay in Thattekad for 2 to 3 days and explore rare species of birds with the help of a guide. Ceylon Frogmouth, Malabar woodpecker, Stork beaked kingfisher, Emerald dove and dwarf Kingfisher are the most popular ones. The Butterfly garden is another beautiful place to cover inside the sanctuary. If lucky, you get to see animals like elephants and porcupines too.
For travellers who want to stay and take a glimpse of lots of varieties of birds at leisure, there are homestays available. They are Jungle bird homestay, Thattekad birds’ song Homestay and Sanctuary view Homestay. Many Hotels are available in Thattekad outside the sanctuary.