Kanjia lake popularly known as Nandankanan lake is situated between 85° 48’ to 85° 50’ East longitudes and between 20° 23’ to 20° 25’ North latitudes spreads over an area of 105 ha. The water spread area of main lake is 75 ha, where as about 30 ha is now separated by a road, which gets connected during monsoon. It is an important wetland lying to the south of Mahanadi delta head, within the boundary of Nandankanan Zoological Park. The zoological park remains in the south side of the lake where as the Botanical garden is situated in the north side of the lake. At the same time, it has got immense socioeconomic value as the fishermen from the local village derive their livelihood. Kanjia lake has been declared as a “Wetland of National Importance” by MoEF, Govt. of India since 2006.
It is a home for many local migratory birds of our State. More than 37 species of birds have been recorded from the lake ecosystem. Besides, 20 species of reptiles, 10 species of amphibians, 46 species of fishes and 3 species of prawns have been recorded so far. The floral composition of the lake ecosystem is consisting of 10 species of sub-merged macrophytes, 14 species of floating macrophytes and 24 species of emergent macrophytes.