World Wetlands Day is celebrated every year on 2 February. India currently has 39 sites (updated October 2020) designated as Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Sites), with a surface area of 689,131 hectares including Wular Lake in Jammu and Kashmir. Ramsar sites are wetlands of international importance.
Ramsar sites are wetlands considered to be of international importance. The Ramsar convention, an international body, forms the basis for identification of such wetlands. The international treaty came into effect in 1971 after identifying the first such wetland at the Ramsar city of Iran. The Convention is an international treaty for the conservation and wise use of wetlands.
- Wular Lake, Jammu& Kashmir
Largest freshwater lake of river Jhelum Basin. Provides flood protection to Kashmir Valley.
- Hokera, Jammu&Kashmir
1,375 haHaven for water birds
- Surisnsar-Mansar Lakes, Jammu & Kashmir
Wildlife sanctuary and a sacred site supporting several species of high conservation value
- Tsomoriri, Jammu & Kashmir
Breeding ground for endangered black-necked crane (Grus nigricollis) and bar-headed geese (Anser indicus)
- Chandertal, Himachal Pradesh
Natural habitat to rare flora and fauna species of alphine region
- Pong Dam lake, Himachal Pradesh
The Maharana Pratap Sagar created by Pong Dam supports highly diverse waterbird habitats
- Kanjili, Punjab
Storage area for irrigation.
- Harike Lake, Punjab
It is the main source of water for Indira Gandhi that irrigates Rajasthan.
- Ropar, Punjab
Important bird watching and boating site.
- Renuka, Himachal Pradesh
A natural wetland with freshwater springs
- Sambhar Lake
Second largest breeding ground for flamingos in India
- Keoladeo National Park (KNP), Rajasthan
Known as the Bharatpur bird sanctuary, also a world heritage site.
- Upper Ganga River (Brijghat to Narora Stretch)
Ganga river dolphin, crocodile and otters are some of the mammalian species found here.
- Nalsarovar Bird Sanctuary, Gujarat
Largest wetland bird sanctuary in Gujarat with around 250 species of water birds
- Bhoj Wetland, Madhya Pradesh
Main source of water for Bhopal City
16. Deepor Beel, Assam
Supports high concentration of migratory waterbird
17. Loktak Lake, Manipur
The only known natural habitat for Manipur brow-antlered deer
18. Rudrasagar lake, Tripura
Ideal habitat for riverine fish species
19. East Kolkata Wetlands, West Bengal
Sewage fed fish ponds
These wetlands treat the city’s sewage and provides for fish and vegetables
20. Bhitarkanika Mangroves, Odisha
Home to endangered salt water crocodiles and Gahirmatha beach is the largest known Olive Ridley sea turtle nestling in the world.
21. Chilika, Odisha
One of the only two lagoons with population of Irrawaddy dolphins. Its rich fishery resources sustains 0.2 million fishers
22. Kolleru Lake, Andhra Pradesh
Acts as a flood balancing reservoir and was once known for its spot-billed pelicans sighting.
23. Point Calimere Wildlife and Bird Sanctuary, Tamil Nadu
Coastal swamps and salt pans
Supports high diversity of water bird
24. Vembanad-Kol, Kerala
Floodplain estuary complex
Known for backwater tourism and rich source of live and sub-fossil clam deposits.
25. Ashtamudi, Kerala
A palm shaped estuary with eight branches, gateway to the backwaters of Kerala.
26. Sashthamkotta Lake, Kerala
Source of drinking water for half a million people in Kollam City and its suburbs.
- Sundarban Wetland, West Bengal
The largest mangrove forest in the world that encompasses hundreds of islands and a maze of rivers, rivulets and creeks
Constitutes over 60 per cent of India’s total mangrove forest area and includes 90 per cent of the Indian mangrove species.
- Nandur Madhameshwar, Maharashtra
Lakes, marshes and riparian forest
Formed by shallow backwaters of Nandur Madhmeshwar dam and is also a bird sanctuary.
- Keshopur-Miani Community Reserve, Punjab
A mosaic of natural marshes, aquaculture ponds and agricultural wetlands
A community-managed wetland, which provides food for people and supports local biodiversity.
- Samaspur Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
Perennial lowland marsh
Six connected lakes are heavily dependent on monsoon rains and harbours threatened bird species.
- Parvati Agra Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
A permanent freshwater environment consisting of two oxbow lakes
Roosting and breeding sites with over 100,000 birds and a refuge for some of India’s threatened vulture species.
- Sarsai Nawar Jheel, Uttar Pradesh
A permanent marsh
An example of co-habitation of humans and wildlife and sustaining the vulnerable Sarus crane.
- Nangal Wildlife Sanctuary, Punjab
A human-made reservoir
Supports abundant flora and fauna including Indian pangolin, Egyptian vulture and the leopard.
- Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
A shallow marshland
Known as a haven for birds, with 25,000 waterbirds regularly recorded.
- Sandi Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
A freshwater marsh
A typical Indo-Gangetic plains wetlands and a habitat for waterfowl with over 40,000 individuals counted in 2018.
- Beas Conservation Reserve, Punjab
A stretch of the Beas River
Dotted with islands, sand bars and braided channels creating a complex environment supporting substantial biodiversity and hosts the only known population in India of the endangered Indus river dolphin.
- Saman Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
A seasonal oxbow lake on the Ganges floodplain
A wintering site for many migrants including the greylag goose.
- Asan Conservation Reserve, Uttarakhand
A stretch of the Asan River running down to its confluence with the Yamuna River
Supports 330 species of birds including red-headed vulture, white-rumped vulture and Baer’s pochard
- Kabartal Wetland, Bihar
Also known as Kanwar Jheel located in the Indo-Gangetic plains
An important stopover along the Central Asian Flyway.
Updated: October, 2020