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Bugs in love

Special trip to rural village to witness the brilliance of fireflies mating.

entertainment Updated: May 30, 2010 13:40 IST
Naomi Canton

The first few weeks of June mean different things to different people. For most Mumbaikars, it signals the end of the scorching heat and the onset of the monsoon. But for the fireflies, it signals the season of love.

Come June, and the skies around the hills of the Western Ghats will be lit up with fireflies in love.

Unusual trip Grassroutes, a social enterprise based in Mumbai, is organising a three-day trip to the village of Purushwadi, 4.5 hours from Mumbai, in rural Maharashtra from Friday, June 11 to Sunday, June 13, to witness this magical scene.

The trip will start from Dadar station, where guests, accompanied by a Grassroutes guide, will take a train to Kasara. From there, they will drive in a jeep. After 4.5 hours, they will reach Purushwadi.

The village gets covered in glowing flying beetles from head to toe at this time, all flashing at each other as part of their courtship. Darren Lobo, manager – operations at Grassroutes, says, “The darkness of the night is dispelled by millions of fireflies signalling to each other in sequence,” he says.

“These magical nights are also welcome signs to the villagers of the region, signalling to them the change of seasons, as it is the fireflies that announce the coming of the season of plenty, the time of 0rejuvenation, of water and of abundance,” he adds.

Those taking part will stay in tents, cottages or village homes. They will eat all their meals with the villagers’ families inside their homes.

During the day they can take part in village activities like ploughing fields, farming, milking cattle, swimming in rivers and cooking.

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