Raju Kasambe, 41, the head of the Bombay Natural History Society’s (BNHS) Important Bird Areas, has turned his childhood fondness for butterflies into a full-time passion.
After eight years’ research across Maharashtra, Kasambe released his Marathi book on butterflies, ‘Maharashtrachi Phulpakhare’ (Butterflies from Maharashtra), on Sunday.
The book features 216 species of butterflies found across Maharashtra and south India, along with 350 colour photographs of the various species with details on each of them.
“When I wrote research papers on butterflies, I realised the lack of literature on this in Marathi. My book is a guide for people who go spotting butterflies in the forest,” said Kasambe.
“The British named several butterfly species in India. Naming them in Marathi took some time as each species had to be studied through literature to know their colours and patterns,” Kasambe added.
Kasambe quit his day job as a medical representative to write the book. He undertook research on birds and butterflies, wrote research papers and also earned a PhD from Nagpur University for his research on the Indian Hornbill.
“I used to collect specimens of dead butterflies while returning from work to study their wing patterns. While I wrote research papers, I clicked photographs with this book in mind,” Kasambe said.