Can Wetlands Find a Safe Haven in Our Cities?

New Delhi, March 16 -- The bird was clearly visible, even from a distance. The vibrant plumage of the northern lapwing, an uncommon winter migrant to the region, shimmered in the warm winter sun. It stood in stark contrast to the green meadow on which it was foraging. Our boat moved towards it, and we had our cameras and binoculars ready. I was both excited and relieved. Excited that I had got to see a rare bird within city limits, and relieved because we could finally move away from the main bank of Deepor Beel, where, congregated in their hundreds, picnickers were cooking and playing music. Not too far away, a passenger train chugged across one of the several bridges that bisect portions of the water body.

Deepor Beel, an important wetland in Guwahati, was declared a Ramsar Site in 2002. …

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