Birding At Talawe

Painted Stork At Talawe, Navi Mumbai

The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), which has been in existence for over a hundred years, regularly organizes outing for its members as also non members. After many false starts, we finally signed up for a half day program of Birding at Talawe, which is a patch of wetland located on the Palm Beach road in Navi Mumbai.

We were picked up at Diamond Garden, Chembur at seven in the morning and reached the destination at around eight. We were a group of fifteen in the bus and were joined by another ten enthusiasts, who had come to Talawe on their own. In hindsight, is the best option, if you have your own transport, as I will explain later.

Led by Julius Rego and Asif Khan, who were the BNHS resource persons, we started the trek into the wetlands, with the salt pans on one side of the path and mangrove on the other. Within minutes of entering he wetlands, Julius and Asif started pointing out various species of birds.

Thankfully, the binoculars we had carried, which is a must even to attempt birding, made a huge difference. For those without binoculars, the BNHS had thoughtfully set up a powerful view-scope.

As this was our first attempt at bird watching or birding, as it is called, we were just astonished at the number of birds that had gathered in this small patch of wet land with the Seawood Estate on one side and construction activity in full swing on another side.

We spent over an hour in the wet lands, before it got quite warm and we made our way back to the bus, where we ate the breakfast we had carried. Since some of the veterans could not tear themselves from birding, we ended up twiddling our thumbs for almost an hour. And that’s were having your own transport makes sense. Around eleven o’clock we started back for Mumbai and reached Diamond Garden a little before noon.

Overall, we had a great time and are looking forward to other outings organized by the BNHS. Maybe, we will even make another visit to Talawe on our own some morning during the bird watching season that extends up to February/March every year.

Some tips for first timers to birding

  • Beg, borrow or… , but do take along a pair of binoculars. Preferably, one per head; sharing is not fun.
  • Carry adequate drinking water. You will need it has the sun rises.
  • Carry breakfast. Birding makes you hungry.
  • A floppy cap, like the ones umpires wear during a cricket match, is the best headgear.
  • Don’t get intimidated by the equipment some of the birders lug along, like cameras with huge zoom lens. Just try to ‘watch’ the birds and take in an many details, as you can.

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Comments

  1. Jessica Mokrzycki says:

    Sounds like it was a wonderful time and I loved the photos! Great tips too! :)

  2. DangerousLinda says:

    Dear Jose,

    Welcome to the world of blogging! I’m excited to follow your adventures!

    Could you please explain why you suggest a floppy hat for birding?

    thank YOU!

    • from7eight says:

      You can hardly call this an adventure, in the true sense of the word. But then seeing these birds, literally in someone’s backyard, made it a wonderful experience.

      A floppy cap gives you a little more protection from the sun than a peak cap. Particularly, the back of the neck.

  3. sangeeta khanna says:

    ha ha..loved the last tip. Don’t get intimidated by the huge zoom lenses of cameramen :-)
    Birding is always fun.

    • from7eight says:

      So far, it has been fun. Hopefully, we continue to enjoy ourselves. Looking forward to a weekend trip, sometime soon.

  4. susandeborah says:

    Dear Jose: We love Corinne to bits and since you are her better half, we love you too. Welcome to the lovely world of bloggers and blogging. Now you will know why Corinne spends so much time online ;)

    And I am a bird watcher too but a lazy one, though and I can vouch for the fact that sharing is not fun while bird watching ‘cos by the time our friend spots and admires the bird, it flies away and we are left asking, “Where Where? But I can’t see . . .”

    Keep blogging.

    Happy to read your post.

    Joy always,
    Susan

    • from7eight says:

      Thanks for your comments, Susan. Yes, we will need to invest in another pair of binoculars before the next excursion.

  5. That must have real fun. I have never tried bird watching. Welcome to the blogging world, Jose.

  6. BlogwatiG says:

    Ah! Another one bites the dust……welcome José. It is always nice to see the tribe increase. The good Lord did say, ‘Go forth and multiply’ :)

    Loved the pics and I’m almost tempted to do this by myself. Gonna keep all your advice handy. All I need is the floppy cap and the binoculars. Food and Drinks, check! :)

    • from7eight says:

      If you can’t beat them, you join them… Actually, if you start ‘birding’ around your home, I guess you can dispense with the floppy cap. Food and drinks are important, irrespective of the activity engaged in.

  7. Well done Jose….welcome to the blogging world.

  8. Welcome to the blogsphere Jose.Saved the useful tips in my memory.Hope to join you and Corinne on a BNHS trail some day :)

    • I don’t trust my memory, plus I have very limited capacity. Prefer making notes, but then I can’t find the notes when I require the information. Looking forward to you joining us on a BNHS trail.

  9. Enjoyed reading your post Jose. Bird watching seems like so much fun :)

  10. Leila Campos says:

    Thanks, Jose. I enjoyed reading your post. Here’s to many more trips to the Wetlands and many more posts.

  11. Mario Campos says:

    I ventured, not into the wetlands, but to visit your blog. Good job guys. Corinne, thanks for letting me know about from 7Eight. Happy birding to you two.

  12. Thanks, Mario, for venturing to visit our blog. Keep watching this space for more, as we travel around India for the present.

  13. Huh! Lovely pictures. The reflections in the water are a treat to the eyes.

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