Manjira Wildlife Sanctuary in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh is one of the most popular sanctuaries of the state for its large population of both resident and migratory birds. Nine separate small islands together form this sanctuary which follows the course of the Manjeera River for as long as 36 kms. It is located at Kalabgur near Sangareddy in Medak District. The sanctuary is enclosed by the Manjeera and Singoor barrages covering an area of 20 km2.
For some in-depth knowledge on nature conservation, the sanctuary also runs an Environmental Educational Centre along with a museum. The aim of these facilities is to educate visitors on the need for maintaining ecological balance. Films on nature and wildlife are shown here daily.
Boat cruises are another attraction of the place. There are three boats available for getting around the place. Binoculars are also available on rent as well as books for identifying the birds that you will come across while bird watching.
Birds: Some of the most commonly found birds are darter, little egret, heron, painted stork, coot, teal, cormorant, pochard, black and white ibis, spoonbill and open billed stork, brahminy duck, pintail, kite, partridge, quail and peacock. A huge population of cranes and barheaded geese are found in the upstream.
Reptiles: The sanctuary is also famous for its marsh crocodile population, popularly known as muggar. Monitor lizard and cobra are also found here.
Invertebrates: Prawn, mollusc and zooplankton.
Fish: Catla, rahu, murrel, karugu and chidwa
Mammals: The Indian hare, wild boar, mongoose and jackal have been sighted too.
Flora: There is extensive growth of Babul prosopis in the sanctuary.
Best Time To Visit: The months between November to March are the best times for visiting this sanctuary as most of the migratory birds come to breed during this time.
Getting There: The sanctuary is located 60 kms from Hyderabad. There are regular bus services from Hyderabad, Nizamabad and Karimnagar. The nearest railhead is at Hyderabad. Mecharia is the nearest town which is about 29 kms away.
Accommodation: Visitors can stay at the government bungalows at Sangareddy (5 km) and Sadashivpet (25 km). But prior booking have to be done through the Divisional Forest Officer, Wildlife Management Division, Medak (Forest Range Officer, Sangareddy, Medak). Otherwise, one can stay at Hyderabad and commute to the sanctuary which takes about 90 minutes by car.