Uga Escapes’ New Bird Book is a Sri Lankan First

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Over a year in the making, Uga Escapes’ spotter’s guide to Sri Lanka’s prolific birdlife is the first of its kind, adding a whole new dimension to the company’s guest experience

Uga Bird Book

Cover of Uga Escapes' Bird Book

More than 92 bird species are featured, each one identified by clear, full-colour photographs showing the defining features of each, together with accompanying text describing appearance and behaviour.

As luxury tourism becomes an increasingly competitive business in Asia and around the world, Uga Escapes has gone the extra mile to ensure that its guests take home a richer, more satisfying experience of the country many call an island paradise. Eschewing the usual plethora of reception-counter pamphlets and flyers advertising local attractions, this luxury hotelier has produced a combination spotter’s guide and notebook for ornithologically inclined guests at its chain of upmarket, close-to-nature resorts in Sri Lanka.

Published in November 2014, A Field Guide to Birds of Uga is a 104-page aviary in print, full of information about the bird species guests are most likely to spot on or near the company’s properties, many of which are located adjacent or near to such avifauna-rich habitats as tropical rainforests, littoral jungles and lagoons. The book, over a year in the making, was written and compiled by a noted Sri Lankan ornithologist who also worked closely with Uga Escapes’ own naturalists. More than 92 bird species are featured, each one identified by clear, full-colour photographs showing the defining features of each, together with accompanying text describing appearance and behaviour. Graphics are used to identify related groups and sighting locations, and each page has a special space for the guest’s own bird watching notes. The book also offers advice to spotters, tips on location and even a spotters’ code of conduct.

‘This is the first book of its kind produced by a company like ours,’ says Priyanjith Weerasooria, Managing Director of Uga Escapes. ‘We realized how many different wild bird species can be seen at our hotels, and how interested our guests were in them – not surprising considering how colourful and flamboyant many species are, not just in appearance but in behaviour. – this is, after all, the home of the peacock!’ he concludes, the decision to publish this book.

All Part of the Experience

The Uga ethos, Mr. Weerasooria explains, is all about creating unique, fulfilling experiences for guests. ‘We want them to cherish memories of their stay with us for a lifetime. This book will add a new dimension to the nature excursions and other activities in which guests participate.’

The work, he says, was not always easy. ‘Some of these birds are quite shy, or simply rare,’ he confides. ‘It took some time to get good pictures of the black eagle, for example, and the orange-headed thrush. But we got them all in the end.’
Uga has no plans to make the book commercially available outside its resorts at present. ‘This is something special, just for our guests,’ he says. ‘Part of the Uga experience’.

About Uga Escapes
Uga Escapes is a luxury hotel chain offering quite, close-to-nature vacation experiences in Sri Lanka for discerning travellers who demand a little bit more. The company currently has three properties: Ulagalla Resort in the Cultural Triangle, Jungle Beach at Trincomalee and Uga Bay at Passikudah. A fourth property, an exclusive city boutique hotel known as the Residence, is scheduled to open in January 2015.

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Ashan Wijewickrema
Uga Escapes
+94 773785365
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Ashan Wijewickrema
Uga Escapes
+9411567100 112
Email >
@UgaEscapes
since: 06/2013
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