Regd. Office: Revathi Bhavan, Edathala P O, ALUVA-683561. Reg.No.: ER 18/10 of 2010 Telephone No.: 0484-2837414


The Cochin Natural History Society is a non-profit making, non-political charitable institution registered under the Travancore-Cochin Literary, Scientific and Charitable Societies Registration Act, 1955. This is a society of amateur naturalists who live in harmony with nature and seek to protect and to preserve the biodiversity and healthy natural environment. The mandate of the society is to undertake studies and documentation of biodiversity around us and to draw attention to the aesthetic, economic, scientific and conservation aspects.The society also intends to provide a platform to those who are concerned to come together and share, enlarge and correct our knowledge about Nature and its magnificence. Any person, who has a love, interest and commitment towards conservation of our biodiversity and natural history may become a member of the society*.

"You can know the names of a bird in all languages of the world,but when you are finished ,
You will know absolutely nothing whatever about the bird.....
So let`s look at the bird and see what it`s doing --that`s what counts.
I learned very early the difference between knowing the name of something and knowing something."

-Nobel Laureate Richard P Feynman(1918-1988)

Friday, July 3, 2020

Afforestation drive in HMT Campus in Kalamassery- faulty implementation


General Technical Manager (MTK)
Machine Tools Division, 
HMT Limited,
HMT Colony P.O. Kalamassery 683 503,
Ernakulam Dist.

Dear Sir, 

Sub:-   Afforestation drive in HMT Campus in Kalamassery-  faulty   implementation  - reg.

This has reference to the move now underway in the Kalamassery campus of  HMT Limited, to  plant  trees in a haphazard  manner, especially large numbers   of teak saplings in a monoculture fashion.

We deeply appreciate the  initiative   of the HMT Limited and the Kerala Forest Department, to plant trees in  the HMT campus  (even as it is necessitated    by the obligation  to plant trees, in lieu  of large areas  of natural  tree cover mowed  down for Kochi Metro  Casting yard) . We are also  very much concerned that the move is an ill executed and done  in a  completely unscientific and haphazard manner, probably wasting public resources on an ill conceived scheme.


A large part of  the area where tree saplings are now  planted is an ecologically degraded land area – which was degraded in the first  place by mowing  down the largely undisturbed patch  of natural tree cover ,for the metro casting yard.

This calls for an approach applying the principles of ecological restoration.

We are very much concerned  that a large area of the land is planted  with teak saplings in a monoculture plantation fashion.

 This is a completely ill thought out move-so to say.  We tried to talk to the senior Officials  of both HMT limited, and the Social forestry Division, Ernakulam, and expressed our concern over the manner in which the tree planting is being done  and especially the decision to plant teak trees in a monoculture plantation mode.   The  reason expressed by these officials is that it will  economically benefit for HMT Ltd., as and when the plantation can be cut and sold.

Teak is a notoriously water guzzling tree species - even more so than the  eucalyptus and wattle .

Teak plantation depletes the ground water table  of this area, thereby affecting the water security and livelihood of the people  of the surrounding area.

The argument that it will economically benefit the HMT ltd, is also a fallacy  as it will take 50-60 year for trees to grow large  enough to be economically beneficial, by the time which,  the plantation will  have depleted enough ground water to cause serious  damage to the environment.This is unpardonable as  we all are facing mass extinctions,  unprecedented floods and droughts and many other ecological and environmental catastrophes ,in the face of which we cannot bring more damages to the environment, by our thoughtless actions.

One more thing is that the teak tree plantations  suck up all nutrients from the soil so much that the area planted  will be barren and damaged ecologically  beyond repair, whereby other trees and plants won't be able to grow healthy.

Another thing  we noticed is that the saplings already planted are of inferior quality apparently ,as they are already showing signs of wilting.

Therefore we propose that ,

The unscientific tree planting drive be stopped forthwith.

The services  of  ecological restoration experts in planting of the trees may be obtained.

The trees suitable for the elevation, agro climate conditions, soil nature,and the ecological niche  be selected as per the  advice of the experts.

Principles such as associated species and complementary species  be observed while planting is done.

Indigenous, threatened  and endemic species suitable  for are may be selected for planting.

Ideas like the Mixed Species Forest Plantation  may be explored as per the advice of the experts.

The planting may be done as per the advice of the experts keeping the mixed tree species planting concept. This will increase the structural complexity of the plantation thereby enhancing the biodiversity and the ecosystem functioning of the area.

As you are very well aware of, sufficient expertise in  restoration ecology , afforestation practices  etc., are available in Kerala, such as, Kerala Agricultural University(College of Forestry) ,  etc.,

This available pool of expertise   must be utilized and the participation of local NGOS  and the general population in the surrounding areas may be obtained and utilized so that the replanting drive is  a long term ecological success story.

We once again appreciate and reaffirm  our solidarity with the decision to plant trees in HMT Campus Kalamassery.

Sincerely Yours,        


Cochin Natural History Society
Reg.No.: ER 18/10 of 2010  
Regd. Office:
(Klathil) Revathi Bhavan, Edathala P O, ALUVA-683561. 
Telephone No.: 9446437410

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Friday, January 10, 2020

Asian Waterbird Count 2020 Ernakulam District

AWC 2020 Press Release-New Indian Express

വാർഷിക ജലപക്ഷി കണക്കെടുപ്പ്    (ഏഷ്യൻ വാട്ടർ ബേർഡ് കൌണ്ട്) –

എറണാകുളം ജില്ലാ - 2020

എറണാകുളം ജില്ലയിലെ ജലപക്ഷി കണക്കെടുപ്പ് 2020 ജനുവരി 12 നു നടത്തപ്പെടുന്നു. കൊച്ചിൻ നാച്ചുറൽ ഹിസ്റ്ററി സൊസൈറ്റിയും കേരള ശാസ്ത്ര സാഹിത്യ പരിഷത് വരാപ്പുഴ യൂണിറ്റും ചേർന്നാണ് പരിപാടി സംഘടിപ്പിക്കുന്നത്.
ജലപക്ഷി കണക്കെടുപ്പ് (Waterbird Count) നടക്കുന്നത് ഏഷ്യൻ വാട്ടർ ബേർഡ് കൗന്റിന്റെ (Asian Water bird Count) ഭാഗമായാണ് .ജലപക്ഷികളുടെ സാന്നിധ്യവും എണ്ണവും   തണ്ണീര്ത്തടത്തിന്റെ    പാരിസ്ഥിതിക ആരോഗ്യത്തിന്റെ സൂചകങ്ങൾ ആണ് .അതുകൊണ്ടാണ് വാർഷിക കണക്കെടുപ്പ് - ലോകമെമ്പാടും നടത്തപെടുന്നത് - വളരെ പ്രാധാന്യം അർഹിക്കുന്നതാകുന്നത്.
ജലപക്ഷികളുടെ നിർവചനം പറയുന്നത് “Species of birds that are ecologically dependant on the Wetlands“
ഗള്ളുകൾ (Gulls),ഗ്രെബ്കൾ(Grebes), സ്റ്റോർകുകൾ(Storks) ,നീർകാക്കകൾ(Cormorants) ഡാർട്ടർകൾ(Darters) റെയിൽകൽ(Rails) സ്‌നൈപ് കൾ(Snipes) താറാവുകൾ(Ducks) ഗീസുകൾ(Geese)  കൊറ്റികൾ കൊക്കുകൾ(Herons) , മണലൂതികൾ(Sandpipers) ഫ്ളമിംഗോകൾ(Flamingo) മുതലായവയാണ്‌ ജല പക്ഷികളുടെ ഗണത്തിൽ പെടുത്തിയിട്ടുള്ളത്.

ഇത്തവണ കണക്കെടുപ്പ് നടത്തുന്നത് ജനുവരി 12 ആം തീയതി ആണ് രാവിലെ 7 മണി മുതൽ 10 .30 വരെ ആണ് കണക്കെടുപ്പു. പക്ഷികളിലും പ്രകൃതിയിലും താത്പര്യം ഉള്ള ആർക്കും പങ്കെടുക്കാം.    ജല പക്ഷികളെ തിരിച്ചറിയാൻ കഴിവുള്ള വിദഗ്ദ്ദരുടെ കൂടെ പക്ഷി നിരീക്ഷണത്തിന്റെ ബാല പാഠങ്ങൾ പഠിക്കുവാനും ഇത് ഒരു അവസരമാണ് .പക്ഷികൾ നമ്മുടെ നില നില്പിനു് അത്യാവശ്യമായ ജീവികളാണ് അവയെ പഠിക്കുകയും സ്നേഹിക്കുകയും ചെയ്തു ആവാസ വ്യവസ്ഥ സംരക്ഷിക്കാൻ ശ്രമിക്കേണ്ടത് നമ്മുടെ കർത്തവ്യമാണ്.
ഈ പക്ഷിനിരീക്ഷണ കണക്കെടുപ്പ് പരിപാടിയിലേക്ക് എല്ലാ പ്രകൃതി സ്നേഹികളെയും സ്വാഗതം ചെയ്യുന്നു

കൂടുതൽ വിവരങ്ങൾക്ക് ബന്ധപ്പെടുക:- 9446437410

വിഷ്ണുപ്രിയൻ കർത്താ .കെ

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Kerala Bird Race 2019 -Invitation

India Bird Races 2019 - 20
to enjoy birds … and learn from their ways


A rendezvous with birds of and around urban India!

The 13th KERALA Bird Race will be held on Sunday, 01st December 2019.

The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited (HSBC), along with Kerala Birder, Cochin Natural History Society, Kerala Agricultural University along with Kerala’s birding community, are organizing this unique programme in and around the city. The all-India coordinator for the India BirdRAces is The Yuhina Canopy, while UWM is the Facilitating Partner.

As more of us people come into the urban world, we are not only shrinking natural landscapes immediately around our expanding urban centers but also our impacts on nearby wildernesses is escalating as well.

The India BirdRaces are a popular, non-competitive program for the joy of birding, that serves to bring together all the birding enthusiasts, from rank beginners to experts and professionals, as well as NGOs, birding groups, city administrations, forest and wildlife personnel and others in every city it is organized. This exciting program is conceptualized to help look at the avifauna (birdlife) of our urban and their surrounding wealth of habitats and serve to popularize bird-watching and help lead to a better understanding of other aspects of our biodiversity and environment.

After all, birds are often the foremost attraction for anyone interested in exploring the natural world. Birds are often also the most visible and moving indicator for changes happening around us, changes influenced by our actions. The BirdRaces help document many sites around every venue, up to an area of at least 40 – 50 km from the radius of every urban area, and we get a trend of what is increasing or retreating or disappearing.
These BirdRaces are simple, enjoyable and interactiv events, beginning from dawn and ending at an interactive get-together at a prominent venue, over dinner and chats and presentations and sharing of thoughts and lots more.
There is a Bird-of-the-Day team prize this year.
The evening Meet-Up of the program this year will be at The Surya Luxury Hotel, Near Kochi Intl. Airport, Railway Stn. Road, Angamaly.

The Chief Guest of the Function is Sri. S Unnikrishnan(IFS), Deputy Conservator of Forests, Kerala Forest Department .

 There will be a screening of the documentaries  The Urban Canopy(Dir: Sujith M G) on the importance of our vanishing urban biodiversity of Kochi city and White Cloud(Dir: Mahesh Maanas)  both by the Green Grace Trust followed by Dinner.

With nearly 3000 people collectively partaking across more than a dozen Indian cities between November and March, the India BirdRaces are possibly the greatest birding event.
Invaluable data has been gathered to this fun event that is no less serious than science.
A day well spent for the cause of birds and urban environment!
All bird enthusiasts are encouraged to participate!!

For participation register at:

Click Here:

There will be a briefing session at Mangalavanam Bird Sanctuary at 5 pm Saturday 30 November

For details contact:

Vishnupriyan Kartha.K

Salim Ali Bird Walk, Thattekkadu, 17 November 2019.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

CNHS Bird Walk at Thattekkad -In Pictures and Video

The Bird Walk at Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary in memory of Bird man of Kerala, Sri. K K Neelakantan  was held on 16th June 2019. Some pictures from the events.Pictures are courtesy of  participants.

CNHS Bird Walk at Thattekkad A short Video

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Ernakulam Heronry Survey 2019- Orientation Meeting

Wetlands in an agriculture-dominated landscape are known to support high bird diversity. Besides supporting bird populations these wetlands also provide ecosystem services in the form of cattle grazing, harvest of multiple wetland products (e.g., reeds, fish, silt, etc.), and water for agricultural and domestic purposes. These wetlands support non-breeding as well as breeding populations of water birds, including those that form heronries.Heronry birds are flagship species and good indicators of the health of the wetland ecosystem (Kushlan 1993; Frederick et al. 2009). Monitoring of heronry birds, hence, is useful in understanding the impact of pollution on the wetlands of agriculture-dominated landscapes and patterns off climate. The simple aim of the Heronries Census is to collect counts of 'apparently occupied nests' (aon) of herons, egrets and other colonial waterbirds from as many heronries as possible each year.

Many heronries hold a dozen or more nesting pairs, even a hundred or more, and occupy traditional, well-known sites that are active for many decades. Smaller and shorter-lived heronries must also be included in the counts, however, to ensure that the data represent the whole population. Even single nests of any of the normally colonial heron or egret species are relevant to the Heronries Census, even if only occupied for one season.

Changes in the numbers of nests over time are a clear measure of population trends. The more heronries that can be counted each year, the more certain we can be of population trends at national, regional and local scales.

Some of the traditional Heronries in Ernakulam District have been identified. But many more remain undiscovered.Therefore we need to make an all out effort to locate and identify as much as Heronries and we need as many volunteers to help us in this effort.
So please come to Mangalavanam on Saturday 11th May 2019 for a detailed discussion and  planning.