Sat. Jul 4th, 2020

Lakes in Himachal Pradesh India

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MAHARANA PRATAP SAGAR

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Maharana Pratap Sagar Dam, also known as Pong Dam Reservoir is located at a height of 450 m.  The dam is named after the great Rajput warrior, Maharana Pratap.  In the past, this dam was popularly known as the Pong dam reservoir.  The reservoir covering an area of nearly 45,000 hectares is a man-made wetland built over the river Beas.  This dam was built in 1975 building the highest earth-fill dam in India on the river Beas in Kangra District of Himachal Pradesh. Surrounding the reservoirs are rugged ridges and mountain streams cutting through the valley. 

This huge mass of water varies from 180 sq kilometres to 400 sq kilometres.   It was declared as a wildlife sanctuary in the year of 1983 and is a paradise for wildlife enthusiasts and bird watchers.   The Pong Dam reservoir harbours more than 230 species of birds belonging to about 54 families out of the total 77 families recorded in India.

The avifauna includes jangle fowls, peafowl, grey partridges and black partridges. Among the waterfowls, main species are bar-headed geese, pintails, common pochards, coots, grebes, cormorants, herons, storks, ruddy shellduck, common teal, shovellers, moorhen, stints, lapwing, plovers, shank, snipe, gull, terns, egrets, kingfishers, kites, mallards, gadwall and marsh harriers.

Due to such a large number of bird species, poaching cannot be ruled out.  The Govt, therefore, press into service anti- poachers and the staff also regularly conduct night raids.  The 307 km long bird sanctuary is an island in the lake.

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