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Regularly sighted Birds in Putalam Lagoon include:

  • Black Bitterns

  • Yellow Bitterns

  • Whistling Teal

  • Purple Heron

  • Striated Heron

  • 4 species of Kingfishers

  • Spot-billed pelican

  • Indian Cormorant

  • Brahiny Kite

  • White-bellied Sea Eagle

  • Changeable Hawk Eagle


  • Caspian Terns

  • Large-crested Terns

  • Lesser-crested Terns

  • Common Terns

  • Little Terns

  • Gull-billed Terns. 



The Palavi and Nachchikallai salterns nearby offer good sightings of waders and water birds where it is common to record 75 species of birds in a single day. Species seen include :


  • Little Stint

  • Lesser Sand Plover

  • Redshank

  • Turnstone

  • Terek

  • Common Sandpiper

  • Marsh Sandpiper

  • Golden Plover

  • Grey Plover




The seas off the Kalpitiya Peninsula, situated on the West coast of the island offer good opportunities to observe rarely seen pelagics due to its close proximity to the edge of the continental shelf.


It also runs in parallel to the peninsula. In this nutrient rich waters the following Pelagic birds are found:


  • Lesser Noddy

  • Brown Noddy

  • Brown-winged Turns

  • Wedge-tailed

  • Flesh-footed

  • Persian Shearwaters

As pelagic seabird movements occur at the onset of the South-west Monsoon. During stormy days, the pelagics birds drift from deeper waters towards the shore and sea bird watching can be conducted from the beach.


The Shearwaters and Noddys are seen during their annual migration across the Indian Ocean and Bridled Terns may be seen in large numbers, sometimes in flocks of up to 400 individuals. 

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