Flamingo arrival delayed due to prolonged rainfall in Pune
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Flamingo arrival delayed due to prolonged rainfall in Pune

Birdwatchers claim that areas comprising of Kumbhargaon,Bhadalwadi and Dalaj used to be natural migration spots for various migratory birds till some years ago. This is the first year that flamingos are arriving later than usual.  

pune Updated: Mar 11, 2018 23:28 IST
Shrinivas Deshpande
Shrinivas Deshpande
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,flamingo,prolonged rainfall
The greater flamingo is the most widespread species of the flamingo family.(HT PHOTO)

Ujjani Dam, situated around 100 km away from Pune, often referred to as the ‘Bharatpur of Maharashtra’ - with reference to Rajasthan’s world-famous bird sanctuary, is experiencing the late arrival of flamingos (phoenicopterus) this year.

The tall, attractive birds which used to frequent the back waters, have not arrived in numbers as yet.This area with marshland and water hyacinth, is an attractive feeding site for many mud-waders like flamingos.

Birdwatchers claim that areas comprising of Kumbhargaon,Bhadalwadi and Dalaj used to be natural migration spots for various migratory birds till some years ago. This is the first year that flamingos are arriving later than usual.

Swapnil Jarad,local residents and bird guide said,“First time in history,this year we have seen late arrival of flamingos in our reservoir. Every year, flamingos generally arrive by November and December, but this year, their late arrival and the reduced number of birds, resulted in disappointment of many bird watchers. It also hit our business.”

Sandeep Nagare,boat owner and local bird guide said,“Flamingos generally feed in muddy areas, but this year enough water in the dam has created a hurdle for flamingos. We have seen that as the water level decreases, the number of flamingos increases.”

Ornithologist, Kiran Purandare said,“Ujjani dam backwaters have seen the delayed arrival of flamingos because, this year, we have received good rainfall which has inturn resulted in good inflow of water in the reservoir.Flamingos are mud waders and they need enough ground to land. Less formation of mud which is their feeding site will lead to the same thing happen with many Mud waders.”

‘Earth Lings’ a Pune-based group of nature enthusiasts, generally organises events to connect with nature.Every year, the group organises a bird watching event at Ujjani dam. Arushi Vaidya, a member of this group said,“We have organised such events for nature lovers.This year we had visited the reservoir on March 10 and 11 and had seen reduced number of flamingos. There are around 100 to 150 flamingos. Every year, around 500 to 700 flamingos visit dam reservoir, which has considerably reduced this year. Delayed arrival and reduced numbers stopped us from organising another visit. We are happy that at least the birds are still visiting the reservoir.”

Flamingos migrate from Gujarat to Ujjani dam in November- December every year to feed on crustaceans, worms, insect larvae and seeds of marsh plants.

First Published: Mar 11, 2018 23:21 IST