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Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary In Okhla

In the 1950s and the 1960s the Okhla Barrage was constructed. This led to the existence of Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary. It is a famous sanctuary of Delhi-NCR, sometimes painted with controversies and, often, providing a staging post for migratory birds that take the route of the Yamuna River.

The sanctuary is sprawled over an area of four kilometers. Visitors can find bird species of wetland, grassland, and thorny scrub in the sanctuary. The Uttar Pradesh Government had recognized the area as a sanctuary in 1990. Today, it is one of the 466 Important Bird Areas (IBA) of India.


Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary lies on the Yamuna River between Uttar Pradesh and Delhi. It is located at the south east end of Delhi city and borders NOIDA at the west. To be precise, it lies on the eastern side of Afzal Ganj, just across the main road between Mayur Vihar of Delhi and NOIDA of Uttar Pradesh. It is at the southern part of the NOIDA Toll Bridge Plaza, just behind Kalindi Kunj.


  • The Yamuna River provides favorable habitat on its banks with plenty of food and space for migratory birds.
  • More than 300 bird species are found at Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary.
  • Months from September to March are the best for winter migratory birds, though the area offers a fine spot for birding all year round.
  • The striking feature of Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary is a huge lake located between Gautam Budh Nagar of NOIDA to the east and Okhla Village of Delhi to the west. This water body was created by damming the river.


According to records from Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary, a sum of 302 bird species has been found in the sanctuary and in its immediate vicinity. The sighting of an extra 27 species is listed as unconfirmed, but probable.

As per the Asian Waterbird Census 2011, in January 2011, a Leucistic Coot, which is renowned for its extra ordinary bright white plumage, was seen with a flock of Common Coots. This was the occurrence recorded in India.

Apart from this, Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary hosts more than 400 bird species throughout the year. The winter months bring more than one lakh migratory birds into this area. According to records, it hosts 30 per cent of the 1200-1300 species of birds in the Indian sub-continent.

The list of birds includes 2 CR (Critically Endangered) species viz; Indian Vulture and White-Rumped Vulture; 9 VU (Vulnerable) species viz; Sarus Crane, Baikal Teal, Lesser Adjutant, Sociable Lapwing, Baer’s Pochard, Indian Skimmer, Finn’s Weaver, Pallas’s Fish Eagle,and Bristled Grassbird; and 7 NT (Near Threatened) species viz; Grey-Headed Fish Eagle, Ferruginous Pochard, and others, erratically south to Sri Lanka and Kerala and east to West Bengal.

The Baikal Teal is a migratory duck, which was seen after 4 decades in this sanctuary.

Best Time to Visit: From September to March

Entrance Fee: Free

How to Reach

Okhla Barrage Bird Sanctuary can be reached through Mathura Road (National Highway 2) via Sarita Vihar while driving towards NOIDA. Indira Gandhi International Airport is more than 30 kilometers from here.

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