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Grey Heron Ardea cinera ©Laurence Poh Website

Punjab is a state in northwest India. The Indian state borders the Pakistani province of Punjab to the west, Jammu and Kashmir to the north, Himachal Pradesh to the northeast, Haryana to the south and southeast, Chandigarh to the southeast and Rajasthan to the southwest. The total area of the state is 50,362 square kilometres (19,445 square miles). The population is 24,289,296 (2000). Punjab's capital is Chandigarh, which is administered separately as a Union Territory since it is also the capital of neighbouring Haryana. Other major cities of Punjab include Ludhiana, Amritsar, Patiala and Jalandhar. The Indus Valley Civilization was one of the world's first and oldest civilizations centered around Punjab.

The Indian Punjab historically forms a part of the larger Punjab region, which includes some parts of Afghanistan, the Pakistani province of Punjab and the North-West Frontier Province, the Indian states of Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, parts of J&K and Delhi and the Union Territory of Chandigarh. Indian Punjab was trifurcated in the year 1966 leading to the formation of Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.

Agriculture is the largest industry in Punjab, it is the largest single provider of wheat to India. Others major industries include the manufacture of scientific instruments, electrical goods, financial services, machine tools, textiles, sewing machines, sports goods, starch, tourism, fertilizers, bicycles, garments, and the processing of pine oil and sugar. Punjab is considered to have the best infrastructure in India, this includes road, rail, air and river transport links that are extensive throughout the region. Punjab also has the lowest poverty rate in India at 6.16% (1999-2000 figures), and has won the best state performance award, based on statistical data compiled by the Indian Government. According to the Global Hunger Index 2008, Punjab has the lowest level of hunger in India.

Most of the Punjab is an alluvial plain, bounded by mountains to the North. Despite its dry conditions, it is a rich agricultural area due to the extensive irrigation made possible by the great river system traversing it. Punjab region temperature range from -2° to 40°C (MIN/MAX), but can reach 47°C (117°F) in summer and can touch down to -5°C in winter. The people that live in the state of Punjab are known as Punjabi.



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Number of Species

State Bird: Eastern Goshawk Accipiter gentilis

Useful Reading

* Field Guides & Bird Song

For a comprehensive list of recommended titles covering India as a whole - please see the main India page of Fatbirder

Birds of Northern India

by Richard Grimmett and Tim Inskipp Helm Field Guides 2003 RRP ?19.99p
See Fatbirder Review

ISBN: 0713651679

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Useful Information

State Bird

Northern Goshawk


Abbreviations Key

Harike Lake National Park


Satellite View

Harike Bird Sanctuary, in Punjab is a large wetland created on the River Sutlej. This shallow water body attracts large numbers of wintering waterfowl and is home to many specialties. Birds like the White-crowned Penduline Tit, Indian Skimmer, Yellow-eyed Pigeon, Rufous-vented Prinia and Sind Sparrow can be found here. Harike was designated as a Ramsar site in March 1990 and has been identified as one of the sites for conservation under the Indian National Wetland Programme…

Sukhna Lake - Chandigarh


Satellite View

It attracts migratory birds from lands as far as Siberia and elsewhere. Sukhna is a sanctuary for many exotic migratory birds like the Siberian duck, Storks and Cranes, during the winter months…

Forums & Mailing Lists


Mailing List

List contact: nik@sapta.com

Mailing List – Discussion Group a group of nature lovers who meet at different locales for birding in Delhi. Go to website to subscribe…

Guides & Tour Operators

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

Birding Pal


Local birders willing to show visiting birders around their area…

Trip Reports


Trip Report Repository

CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.

Places to Stay

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

Ritz Plaza Hotel Amritsar


The hotel's 50 rooms and suites are spread over an aristocratic 2 acres on Mall Road, Amritsar's very elite locale. Ritz Plaza has many firsts to its credit - being the first centrally air-conditioned hotel in Punjab. In its own history it has hosted a galaxy of who's who, including a visit by the Queen of England…

Other Links

Birds of Chandigarh


Sightings of birds posted on birds-chandigarh google group will be uploaded on this blog for future reference. Others items will include trip reports, list of wildlife sanctuaries and national parks, birding hotspots, conservation measures being taken etc.

Delhibirds - The Northern India Bird Network


Site guide, recent sightings, photo gallery, checklists and more…

Status of Punjab Wetlands


Wetlands provide habitat for a wide variety of plants, invertebrates, fish, and larger animals, including many rare, threatened, or endangered species. The plants and animals found in wetlands include both those that are able to live on dry land or in the water and those that can live only in a wet environment…