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Location India, Madhya Pradesh
Central coordinates 75o 41.00' East  22o 49.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A4i
Area 14,000 ha
Altitude 0
Year of IBA assessment 2004

Bombay Natural History Society

Site description The ruler of erstwhile Indore state created Yeshwantsagar reservoir in 1939 to meet the growing needs of the city. Made by the construction of a dam on the Gambhir river, the reservoir is situated at a distance of c. 21 km from Indore, which is also known as the business capital of Madhya Pradesh and is well connected by both air and rail routes. Water from the reservoir is mainly used for irrigation and drinking purposes and supports the requirement of Indore, which is shared by the Narmada river as well. Open fields on almost all sides surround Yeshwantsagar reservoir. The main cultivation is wheat, corn, pulses and cash crops. The terrain is mostly flat and devoid of undulating areas. The aquatic vegetation comprises mostly of Ipomoea, water lily, lotus and reeds. The reservoir is mostly shallow, good for waders and other waterfowl. As the water level recedes, many islands serve as roosting sites for waterfowl.

Key Biodiversity 

AVIFAUNA: Due to its vast shallow reedbeds, the wetland is a haven to a large number of birds in winter and in summer. Large congregations of Sarus Crane Grus antigone, with numbers exceeding 170, are reported from the site, apart from several nesting pairs (Gopi Sundar et. al. 1999). This number, being more than 1% of the biogeographical population of the species, qualifies the site as an IBA. These Sarus Cranes formed the major population of all Sarus Cranes counted in the state of Madhya Pradesh (Gopi Sundar et al. 2000). Later, a similar congregation was reported from the Upper Lake of Bhopal (Koustubh Sharma pers. comm. 2002). As no proper survey has been done on the avifauna of the area, not much can be said about the species and its population in this site.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Sarus Crane Antigone antigone resident  2004  present  A1, A4i  Vulnerable 

IBA Monitoring

2003 high not assessed not assessed
Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data

Agriculture and aquaculture annual & perennial non-timber crops - small-holder farming happening now some of area/population (10-49%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Human intrusions and disturbance recreational activities happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Natural system modifications dams & water management/use - abstraction of surface water (agricultural use) likely in long term (beyond 4 years) small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Pollution agricultural & forestry effluents - herbicides and pesticides happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   -
Artificial - aquatic   -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
fisheries/aquaculture -
Notes: Fishing
tourism/recreation -
Notes: Tourism and recreation
water management -
Notes: Irrigation and potable water

Acknowledgements Key contributors: K. S. Gopi Sundar and Koustubh Sharma.


Gopi Sundar, K. S., Kaur, J. and Choudhury, B. C. (1999) Distribution, general ecology and conservation status of the Indian Sarus Crane (Grus antigone) in India. Results of an all-India survey 1998-99. Wildlife Institute of India, Dehra Dun, Pp. 122.

Gopi Sundar, K. S., Kaur, J. and Choudhury B. C. (2000) Distribution, demography and conservation status of the Indian Sarus Crane (Grus antigone) in India. J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc. 97:319-339.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Yeshwantsagar Reservoir. Downloaded from on 23/10/2016

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