Palatupana Saltern, Sri Lanka Bird Sancyuary
The Palatupana Salt Pan is in active use, but nevertheless is very good for shore birds. A working salt pan is not a very exciting affair and does not quite have the same visitor appeal as a visit to a working tea factory for example. As a result the only people who do a de-tour here en-route to the Ruhuna National Park, are birdwatchers.
The salt pans are excellent for waders such as Stints, Curlew and Common Sandpiper, Lesser Sand Plover, Grey Plover, Terek Sandpiper, Black-winged Stilt and star attractions like Broad-billed Sandpiper. Between five to ten thousand migrant White-winged Black Terns have been seen to roost here together with small numbers of other migrant terns including Common and Gull-billed tern. Other water birds include the internationally threatened Spot-billed Pelican and migrant waterfowl like Pintail, Garganey and Shoveller. Palatupana is one of the best shorebird sites in the world for viewing and photographing waders at close range