Bird Watching

Sikkim's extreme altitudinal variation brings in tremendous change in climatic condition that in turn supports the biodiversity of different region. In some places, once can reach Alpine Zone in jjust an hour from the temperate one, where as in other places, once can spend hours in meadow or ravine, which provides ample opportunity to add to the birds count. Unlike in most parts of the Himalaya, Sikkim provides birds life in mere 7096 Sq.kms area which range in 200 to 8848 meters.


Sikkim’s border stretches to plateau of Tibet (China), Ganges plain, Nepal and Bhutian’s mountainous regions which in turn brings in different species all in one in 100 kms distance. 4000 spcies of flowering plants, 180 lakes, numerous river and streams, large area of forest cover together with bushes and shrubs in the upper region supports good number of species. Migratory birds from Tibet (China), Siberia and various other countries cross over Sikkim or some time halt on their journey to plains of India or Africa. Short altitudinal migration can be seen in Gangtok itself. Upper areas of Gangtok resident birds migrate to about 3000-4000 meters towards Tsongo Lake during summer time and return by the middle of November, breed and stay till the end of May.


Kyongsla Alpine Sanctuary and Fambonglho Wild Life sanctuary are the nearest parks where one can spend time near Gangtok. Kanchendzong Bio-sphere reserve gives an opportunity to spot numerous birds as it starts at Yuksom-1740 meters and runs up to 4900 meters through a thick forest substituted by Rhodendron bushes on the higher reaches further on covered by juniper & Rhododendron shrubs. Bio-sphere reserves has large flocks of Blood Pheasant together with some very shy Satyr Tragopan, Himalayan Monal, Choughs, Ravens, Snow pigeons, Grandala, numerous specie of finches, tits, thrushes, warblers, babblers. Sikkim Tours and Travels organizes various types of bird watching tours ranging from day hike to longer period and also organizes birding for specific species.