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Purbasthali is a small town in Kalna subdivision of Burdhaman in west bengal. It is located nearly 130 km north from Kolkata. This place is locally known as Chupi Char, it lies on the banks of a large oxbow lake created by the Ganges river; The 2-3 km long lake attracts migrants and water birds during winter (majorly during November to March) and that also brings many birders to this non-descript small town. The shallow, still water of the lake facilitates to grow aquatic plants which in turn serves as the source of plentiful food to the fish and winter birds. Thousands of migratory birds like Red Crested Poachard, Common Coot, Northern Shoveller, Pintail, Gadwal, Eurasian wigenon come during mid november and stays upto march mid week; To visit this place you have to hire a boat (for 2 hours charge nearly 300 bucks) and that will take you to their colorful avian world. This is also a heaven for photography too - you have the oppurtunity to explore the rural bengalee cultures, their life style and the lake itself.

How to reach

From Howrah station one can take Howrah to Katwa local train via bandel and get down at Purbasthali station (Just 2 stations after Nawadip). Hire a cycle rishka or motorised van from station to reach “Chupi Bazar”. From there, the river belt is just walking distance. Via car - the road direction is as follows -

Airport 1 no -> Barasat -> Amdanaga -> Garulia -> Haringhata -> Chakdaha -> Ranaghat -> Fulia -> Shantipur -> Krishnagar -> State highway 8-> Nawadip -> Gourango brige to cross ganges -> State highway 6 -> Parulia bazar -> Right turn -> Purbasthali Block 2

Where to stay

Few private hotels are there at Nawadip, Krishnagar and Mayapur (ISKCON Guest house). You can stay there and can reach the place from there via Train or Taxi. There is a basic arrangement of 2-bedroom guesthouse with attached toilet (Rs. 300 per room) at Purbathali; this is maintained by a NGO - Kastasalir Banabithi. To book this - you can drop me a email at amit@bengalbirds.info

List of birds (Last updated on Feb 2011):

Lesser whistling teal Gadwal
Shovelar Northern pintail
Cotton pigmy goose Eurasian wigeon
Red crested pochard Ferruginous pochard
Phesant tailed jackana Bronze winged jackana
Common coot Little grebe
Indian Pond Heron Asian Openbill
White-Breasted Waterhen Small pratincole
Barn swallow Asian palm swift
Asian Pied Starling Common greensank
Little cormorant Indian cormorant
White Wagtail Purple heron
Northern Pintail Blue-Throated Barbet
Cattle egret Little egret
Spotted Dove Eurasian collared dove
Wood Sandpiper Common Sandpiper
Grey Heron Green bee-eater
Small minivet River tern
Red wattled lapwing River lapwing
Osprey Scally bellied munia
Ruddy shelduck Spotted redshank
Common kingfisher White throated kingfisher
Pied kingfisher Stork billed kingfisher
Great egret Intermediate Egret
Little grebe Puple swampen
Plaintive cuckoo Plain prinia