The Cotton Pygmy Goose is the Thumbelina of the anatidae family which is constituted by ducks, geese and swans. While Hans Christian Andersen’s Thumbelina emerged out of a flower, the Cotton Pygmy Goose commonly glides around water lilies.
- Reasonably undisturbed freshwater lakes on the outskirts of Chennai and sections of Kancheepuram and Thiruvallur are known to support small populations of this pint-sized resident bird.
- Cotton Pygmy Teals paddling around in relatively good numbers at Nayapakkam, Nemam and Chembarambakkam lakes.
- State of India’s Birds 2020 report has placed the Cotton Pygmy Goose under a concerning list — “Common Birds Showing Strong Long-term Declines”.
- Freshwater lakes and even ponds, its precincts rarely hoofed, and its expanse generously sprinkled with aquatic vegetation, particularly lilies, make a rule-of-thumb formula for assessing which habitats would suit the Cotton Pygmy Goose.
- Wherever you have suitable vegetation, particularly constant lily growth, there is a good chance of sighting the Cotton Pygmy Goose. Thenneri and Nayapakkam are among those places.
- Chembarambakkam lake is the best place to sight this species. It has a very healthy population, so does Nayapakkam.
- It is remarkable that freshwater lakes in the outskirts that are not significantly marred by pollution fare better in drawing the Cotton Pygmy Goose.
- The bird has a lower tolerance threshold for polluted waterbodies.
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