Lat:26o37´N/87o00´W l17,500ha ms The vegetation is mainly tall khar-pater grassland with a few patched of khair-sissoo scrub forest and deciduous mixed riverine forest. The Sapta-Koshi river floods the whole reserve to up to 3m during the monsoon and changes its course from season to season. 
Protected/registered status 

January-April (31.03.1995 to 01.04.1995)


Birding Site Guide

Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve lies on the flood plains of the Sapta-Koshi in Saptari and Sunsari Districts of Eastern Nepal. The reserve is defined by the eastern and western embankments of the river. This site and the Kosi Tapu National Park accommodation is found at Kosi Tapu Tented Camp on the edge of the park. 

This site and national park are situated in the east of country, with the newly constructed paved road from Kathmandu to Kosi, it is now far easier to reach than in 1997. However it is not a motorway and still a long days drive of c300+km through the dry Sal forest. There are opportunities to do a little birding along the way, though birds may be very few in the dry season. Arriving at Kosi continue over the reservoir barrage and out to the countryside a short way, at Kosi Tappu follow the signs for the army base or national park (near each other, the latter badly signed) for accommodation. In our visit there was no accommodation anywhere; we were offered a mattress on top of some rat infested potato sacks at the back of a stall, which we were eager to reject, then finally a goat shed (yes with goats) at the army, which we took- and got pestered by goats trying to get back in all night! 

The range of habitats at Kosi is varied from marshes and forest to the open waters of the reservoir. Here it is possible to see Pied Harrier or in winter the huge numbers of ducks. 

Species Notes 

So far 280 species have been recorded these include the Swamp Partridge and Bengal Florican. 

Species seen 

  • Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis KT
  • Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus KB
  • Little Cormorant Phalacrocorax niger KB
  • Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo KB
  • Grey Heron Ardea cinerea KB, KT
  • Purple Heron Ardea purpurea KB
  • Great Egret Ardea alba CS, KB
  • Cinnamon Bittern Ixobrychus cinnamomeus KT
  • Black-necked Stork Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus NT KB
  • Lesser Adjutant Leptoptilos javanicus V KB, Ch, 20
  • Black-headed Ibis Threskiornis melanocephalus NT KB
  • Red-naped Ibis Pseudibis papillosa CS, KB
  • Eurasian Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia KB
  • Bar-headed Goose Anser indicus BR, KB
  • Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea CS, KB
  • Eurasian Wigeon Anas penelope KB
  • Gadwall Anas strepera KB
  • Northern Pintail Anas acuta KB
  • Garganey Anas querquedula KB
  • Northern Shoveler Anas clypeata KB
  • Common Pochard Aythya ferina KB
  • Tufted Duck Aythya fuligula KB
  • Osprey Pandion haliaetus CS, KB
  • Eurasian Griffon Gyps fulvus BR, KB
  • Cinereous Vulture Aegypius monachus NT KT
  • Northern Harrier Circus cyaneus KB, KT
  • Pied Harrier Circus melanoleucos KB
  • Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus KB
  • Swamp Francolin Francolinus gularis V KT
  • White-breasted Waterhen Amaurornis phoenicurus KB, KT
  • Baillon's Crake Porzana pusilla KT
  • Ruddy-breasted Crake Porzana fusca KT
  • Purple Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio KB
  • Great Thick-knee Burhinus recurvirostris KT
  • Small Pratincole Glareola lactea KB
  • Pintail Snipe Gallinago stenura BR, KT
  • Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata KB
  • Little Tern Sternula albifrons KB
  • Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia KB, KT
  • River Tern Sterna aurantia KB
  • Red Collared-Dove Streptopelia tranquebarica CS, KB
  • Asian Koel Eudynamys scolopaceus CS, KT
  • Greater Coucal Centropus sinensis KT
  • Lesser Coucal Centropus bengalensis CK, KB, KB
  • Spotted Owlet Athene brama KB, P
  • Little Owl Athene noctua KT
  • Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis CS, KT
  • Eurasian Wryneck Jynx torquilla KB, S
  • Red-whiskered Bulbul Pycnonotus jocosus CS, KB
  • Common Iora Aegithina tiphia CS, KT
  • Blue-capped Rock-Thrush Monticola cinclorhynchus KT
  • Scaly Thrush Zoothera dauma KB
  • Dark-throated Thrush Turdus ruficollis BR, CK, CS, KT
  • Yellow-bellied Prinia Prinia flaviventris KB
  • Paddyfield Warbler Acrocephalus agricola KB
  • Blyth's Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus dumetorum KB
  • Clamorous Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus stentoreus KB
  • Dusky Warbler Phylloscopus fuscatus 20, KB, KT
  • Smoky Warbler Phylloscopus fuligiventer 20, KB
  • Tickell's Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus affinis KB
  • Striated Grassbird Megalurus palustris KB, KT
  • Red-breasted Flycatcher Ficedula parva CS, KT, P
  • Siberian Rubythroat Luscinia calliope KT
  • Bluethroat Luscinia svecica BR, KT, KB
  • Common Babbler Turdoides caudata KT
  • Large Gray Babbler Turdoides malcolmi KB, KT
  • Eurasian Golden Oriole Oriolus oriolus KT
  • Black-hooded Oriole Oriolus xanthornus CK, CS, KT
  • Brown Shrike Lanius cristatus BR, KT, P
  • Gray-backed Shrike Lanius tephronotus KB
  • Ashy Woodswallow Artamus fuscus CS, KB
  • Bank Myna Acridotheres ginginianus BR, KB
  • White-throated Munia Euodice malabarica KT
  • Nutmeg Mannikin Lonchura punctulata KB
  • Yellow-breasted Bunting Emberiza aureola NT KT mainly
  • Black-faced Bunting Emberiza spodocephala KB



  • CR = Critical
  • E = Endangered
  • V = Vulnerable
  • NT = Near-threatened
  • e = endemic
  • intro = introduced


  • 0 = no sites given for common species
  • BR = Bagmati River
  • CS = Chitwan (Sauraha)
  • CK = Chitwan (Khagendra Mali)
  • G = Godaveri Gardens
  • KB = Kosi Barrage
  • KT = Kosi Tappu
  • K = Kathmandu
  • N = Najarjung
  • P = Pulchowki
  • R = road Kathmandu to Kosi
  • S = Shepuri
  • 20 = 20000 Lakes

Other fauna 

Hog Deer, Wild Boar, Spotted Deer, Wild Buffalo, Blue Bull and Gangetic Dolphin. 

Amphibians and reptiles include King Cobra, Common Cobra, Krait, Rat Snake and Pitón, Gharial Crocodile. 

Butterflies seen in Nepal (not just here) were: Indian Tortoiseshell Aglais cashmirensis aesisIndian Red Admiral Vanessa indica Painted Lady Vanessa cardui Pale Grassblue Zizeeria maha maha Pale clouded Yellow Colias erate lativitta Glassy Bluebottle Graphium cloanthus cloanthusGreat Zebra Graphium xenocles phrontis Lime Swallowtail Papilio demoleus demoleus BrimstoneGonepteryx rhamni nepalensis Common Red Flash Rapala iarbus Glassy Tiger Parantica aglea melanoides Common Sailor Neptis hylas kamarupa Blue Admiral Kaniska canace canace Palin Tiger Danaus chrysippus chrysippus Common Indian Crow Euploea core core Tabby Pseudergolis wedah Common Windmill Atrophaneura polyeuctes letincius Lilacfork Zophoessa sura and White Royal Tajuria illurgis 

Author: BSG, Geof Grafton