Vaduvur and Sitheri lakes, Tamil Nadu, India: conservation and management perspective

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V. Gokula
P. Ananth Raj


Wetlands are declining globally.  Hence, it is reasonable to assume that most existing wetlands are impacted to some degree by human land-use that in turn caused population declines in many wetland-dependent taxa.  The National Wetland Atlas has classified Tamil Nadu as a wetland-rich state as they occupy 6.92% of geographic area.  However, studies on wetlands are limited in Tamil Nadu.  Hence, an attempt was made to identify the threats to the Vaduvur and Sitheri lakes and their associated fauna.  In total, 118 species of birds belonging to 87 genera, 48 families and 18 orders in Vaduvur Lake and 87 species of birds belonging to 71 genera, 48 families and 16 orders in Sitheri Lake were recorded.  A total of 28 zooplankton species were recorded in both the lakes comprising 14 species of rotifers, six species of cladocerans, five species of copepods, two species of ostracods, and one species of protozoa.  A total of 15 species of fishes were identified from the sellers who catch fishes from the Sitheri Lake.  The physico-chemical parameters of water varied according to the seasonal fluctuations in rainfall pattern.  In general, wetland management for waterbirds of these two lakes should focus on providing suitable nesting habitats and available food resources for dependant avifauna.  Management of invertebrates, amphibians, and fishes in these two lakes is one technique that can be used to provide foraging opportunities for waterbirds.  An integrated approach and increased co-operation would result in the rational use of this freshwater resource leading to improved standards of living around this lake. 

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