Ravi Shankaran, Director of Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History at Anaikatti here, passed away early on Saturday. He was 44. An authority at the centre said he died of a heart attack. Mr. Shankaran took over as the Director of the centre only six months ago. By then, he had put in 15 years of service in it. Prior to that, he had been with the Bombay Natural History Society. Mr. Shankaran is survived by his wife and a four-year-old daughter.