|Central coordinates||76o 10.83' East 10o 11.48' North|
|IBA criteria||A1, A4i, A4iii|
|Altitude||0 - 1m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2004|
Site description The Kole wetlands, covering an area of 13,632 ha are spread over Thrissur and Malappuram districts extending from the northern bank of Chalakudy river in the south to the southern bank of Bharathapuzha river in the north (Johnkutty and Venugopal 1993). The name Kole refers to the peculiar cultivation practice carried out from December to May. “Kole”, a Malayalam word, indicates a field that gives a bumper crop, so long as floods do not damage it (Nameer 2002). Rice cultivation in Kole started as early as the 18th century by reclaiming the Trichur kayal lands (backwaters) by erecting temporary earthen bunds. The water pumped out from the field is stored in a network of canals in the area. The Kole areas are low-lying and have a central, narrow strip covering a long expanse, with many pockets running into cultivated land on either side. The region is naturally subject to salt-water ingression. During the monsoon, the entire region, which gets submerged under water, is cultivated by draining the water and by erecting bunds. Regulators are provided at certain strategic points to prevent the intrusion of salt water into the Kole wetlands during the cultivation period. Grasses and sedges are found in shallow and drier zones. The main activity in and around Kole is paddy cultivation. As Kole is a large sprawling wetland, with human habitation all around, there are coconut and arecanut plantations, gardens and cultivated plants.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Garganey Anas querquedula||-||2004||present [units unknown]||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Little Egret Egretta garzetta||-||2004||present [units unknown]||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Spot-billed Pelican Pelecanus philippensis||-||2004||present [units unknown]||-||A1||Near Threatened|
|Greater Spotted Eagle Aquila clanga||-||2004||present [units unknown]||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica||-||2004||present [units unknown]||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida||-||2004||present [units unknown]||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|A4iii Species group - waterbirds||unknown||2004||20,000 individuals||unknown||A4iii|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|Notes: Water management|
Acknowledgements Key contributor: P. O. Nameer.
Ali, S. (1969) Birds of Kerala. Oxford University Press. Bombay.
Grimmett, R., Inskipp, C. and Inskipp, T. (1998) Birds of the Indian Subcontinent. Christopher Helm (Publishers) Ltd., London, U.K.
Johnkutty, I.and Venugopal, V. K. (1993) Kole wetlands of Kerala.Kerala Agricultural University. Pp. 68.
Jayson, E. A. (2002) Ecology of Wetlands Birds in the Kole lands of Kerala.
KFRI Report No. 244. Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi. Pp. 95.
Nameer, P. O. (1993) Birds of Kole Wetlands - Survey Reports II. Nature Education Society, Trichur (NEST) Kerala, Kerala Forest Research Institute and Kerala Forest Department. Pp. 1-21.
Nameer, P. O. (1994) Birds of Kole Wetlands - Survey Reports III. NEST and Kerala Forest Department.
Nameer, P. O. (2002) Kole wetlands - an internationally important wetland in peril. Proceedings of the Fourteenth Kerala Science Congress 29- 31 January 2002, Kochi, Pp 627-630.
Sivaperuman, C. and Jayson, E. A. (2000) Birds of Kole Wetlands, Thrissur, Kerala. Zoo’s Print Journal 15(10): 344-349.
Wetlands International (2002) Waterbirds Population Estimates: Third Edition. Wetlands International Global Series No. 12. Wageningen, The Netherlands.
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