India is home to many exotic species of birds and animals but did you know that the country also has set a record for the ‘Most bird species in an aviary’? Yes, the Guinness Book of World Records recently confirmed that the beautiful Shuka Vana Bird Home in Mysore, Karnataka, has the most kinds of birds in a garden.
The striking 50m-high free-flight, one-acre aviary has around 2,100 colourful residents, of 468 different species, according to Guinness World Record’s website. Established in 2012, Shuka Vana, also a rehabilitation centre for birds is in the serene premises of Avadhoota Datta Peetham, located in the picturesque foothills of Chamundi Hill.
And the man behind the amazing initiative is Sri Ganapathy Sachchidananda Swamiji. He is not only a collector or rare and depriving exotic birds but also a healer who rescues endangered, injured and abandoned birds and offers them a shelter at his aviary.
Referring to ancient Indian texts, he argues that parrots have the ability to travel into invisible spiritual dimensions and to convey essential nourishment to departed human souls. “Parrots have capabilities not only for mimicking human speech and songs, but, he believes are perhaps the source of man’s initial foray into areas of communication,” his website adds. He not only takes care of these avian creatures but also trains them.
“The Shuka Vana is a distinctive aviary where one gets the most astonishing opportunity of being in the divine presence of the living, breathing deity that presides over one’s own zodiac sign, and a parrot that represents one’s planet and birth date. Here you will find the parrot that stands as a symbol for each day of the month as well,” the website states.
However, it must be noted this is not the only world record in his kitty. Swamiji currently holds not one or two but whopping eight Guinness World Records titles! His records include — Largest Hindu Smriti, Most people chanting and Largest display of bonsai trees among other.
In 2016, a record-breaking display of bonsai trees was hosted at the International Bonsai Convention and Exposition in his ashram which consisted of 2,649 cultivated plants.