The State Government will plant more than 680 crore saplings on private lands in the next eight years, Forest Minister K.T. Pachamal has said.

The government had come up with the initiative to increase the green cover as the State currently had a green cover of 21.76 per cent, he said after inspecting the Vellode bird sanctuary here on Monday. The government had already launched a massive initiative to plant 64 lakh saplings in April, he added.

Lakhs of birds are visiting the sanctuaries in Tamil Nadu during the migratory season, Tamil Nadu Forest Minister D Selvaraj said.