Wet Lands of Pakistan

Topics: Wetland, Pakistan, Sindh Pages: 5 (1657 words) Published: October 23, 2011
Although predominantly arid and semi-arid, Pakistan possesses a great variety of wetlands ranging from coastal mangroves and mudflats in the Indus Delta complex to the glacial lakes of the Himalayas. The total wetland area has been estimated at over 7,800,000 ha. Though rich in biodiversity, these areas have traditionally been neglected both in terms of conservation and sustainable development. Wetlands can be divided into three categories: inland, riverine and coastal. These wetlands provide substantial economic benefits to local communities as they are a source of staple food, livestock grazing and fodder, fuel-wood, transport, energy generation and irrigation. In addition, these ecosystems provide essential habitats for a number of important mammal species like the smooth coated otter, Indus dolphin, fishing cat, hog deer, and wild boar. the following are the major wetlands of Pakistan:

Haleji, Hadero, kennjhar lake bufferzone
Zangi Nawar Lake
Ucchali, Khabbika, Jalar lake bufferzone
Rawal Lake
The Sind and Mekran coast
Indus Delta and River system

Haleji, Hadeiro, Keenjhar Lake Bufferzone:

Asia's greatest water fowl reserve, Haleji lake is 70 km (about 52 miles) from Karachi. A perennial freshwater lake with associated marshes. and adjacent brackish seepage lagoons, set in a stony desert. During winter, a hundred thousand birds fly down to Haleji from the cold of Siberia. It is a bird watchers' paradise. Between Bhanbhore and Thatta, if you turn into the countrylane by the 82km (51/1 mile-furlong stone) a 6-km long drive will bring you to the largest bird sanctuary of the country, Haleji Lake. During the winter, migatory birds come to this lake in very large numbers to the great delight of the bird watchers. Haleji Lake supports a very diverse fauna and flora, including several threatened species, and is one of the most important breeding, staging and wintering areas for waterfowl in Sindh, regularly holding between 50,000 and 100,000 birds. You can drive along the 16 km. (10 miles) track around the lake for photography or bird watching. Another lake worth visiting is Lake Hadeiro 5km north of Haleji. Unlike Haleji lake this lake's water is brakish. Generally bird species different from Haleji are found here, especially Pelican and Flamingos . Ahead of this lake lies Keenjhar lake. A large natural freshwater lake, the largest in Pakistan, with extensive reed-beds, particularly in the shallow western and northern parts. This lake also contains many different species of birds different from Haleji and Hadeiro. Kinjhar Lake supports a very diverse flora and fauna, and is an extremely important breeding, staging and wintering area for a wide variety of waterfowl. Mid-winter waterfowl counts in the four winters 1986/87 to 1989/90 averaged 140,000 (maximum 205,000 in 1987/88). Together, these three lakes provide refuge to almost 250 different species of birds. Common birds include Grey heron, Purple heron, Night heron, Purple Ganinule, Water rail, Brahminy kite, Black shouldered kite and Coucal. Rawal Lake:

Rawal Lake is situated in the heart of the national capital Islamabad, protected within an isolated section of the Margalla Hills National Park. A small water storage reservoir with some associated freshwater marshes, adjacent to a large area of protected woodland on the outskirts of Islamabad. The reservoir is of considerable importance for wintering waterfowl (mostly Anas platyrhynchos); it is scenically attractive and within very easy reach of Islamabad and Rawalpindi. It is a popular area for outdoor recreation including boating and sport fishing, and offers an ideal opportunity for the development of a conservation education centre and nature reserve with sophisticated facilities for the general public. A large area of marsh at the northwest corner of the reservoir would be suitable for management as a strict nature reserve to provide disturbance-free areas...
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