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Why A Banker Has Been Photographing Mumbai’s Flamingos

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Why A Banker Has Been Photographing Mumbai’s Flamingos

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Vidyasagar Hariharan discovered his function in life due to working. In 2016, the Mumbai resident joined a marathon teaching membership. Whereas going for a run, his marathon mates spoke about going biking to Sewri, to see flamingos. The banker was pleasantly stunned when he learnt that flamingos come to Mumbai,

His curiosity piqued, the hen lover cycled along with his mates to Sewri the following morning. What he noticed bowled him over. He fell in love with the wading birds the primary time he laid eyes on them.

He informed his marathon coach about his expertise and was knowledgeable by him that there was a small lake behind the NRI advanced residential space in Navi Mumbai, to which flamingos throng in hundreds throughout the season and might be seen in a lot nearer quarters than Sewri.

Vidyasagar can completely recall that Saturday morning in March 2016 prefer it was yesterday. He calls what he noticed ‘magic’.

“I heard a loud noise as we have been nearing the waterbody. It was the sound of hundreds of flamingos cackling. The rising solar painted the murky tidal waters and the pink birds golden. I used to be enamoured,” provides the 47-year-old.  

Having an curiosity in pictures and birds, Vidyasagar then invested in digicam and started visiting the wetlands each week. He additionally began intensive analysis on the birds.

He says that flamingos started visiting Mumbai within the Nineteen Nineties. A Bombay Pure Historical past Society (BNHS) research discovered 1.2 lakh Larger and Lesser flamingos (two species) in Mumbai — primarily the Thane creek — in 2019.

“Thane creek, which separates Mumbai island from the mainland is the important thing to this ecosystem and right here is the place the flamingos arrive from Kutch and a few most likely (the higher flamingos) all the best way from the Persian gulf. Mumbai has such a wonderful mangrove and wetland habitat,” provides Vidyasagar.

Visiting the quite a few wetlands within the metropolis and documenting the gorgeous birds led to a deeper understanding in regards to the points round wetlands and the pure historical past phenomenon. He determined to create consciousness in regards to the significance of conserving the city wetlands by way of his Instagram web page. 

Listed below are 10 footage that present how necessary it’s to protect the mangroves and wetlands:

  1. The lake behind the NRI advanced, Navi Mumbai.
The lake behind the NRI complex, Navi Mumbai. Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

This image completely captures how people have intruded into animal territory. Dwelling to greater than 60 species of birds, this lake is underneath menace, as builders need to assemble a golf course on this space.

“I discovered my function after I heard in regards to the golf course. This wetland lake is amongst the three in Navi Mumbai which might be essential for flamingo migration. They arrive right here throughout excessive tides and carry out their mating dance,” provides the photographer.

  1. The lake behind the NRI Advanced, Navi Mumbai.
Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

This was considered one of Vidyasagar’s first footage, taken in 2016, throughout dawn. He explains that flamingos are an excellent indicator of the well being of the wetlands

“The wetlands in Mumbai, particularly the Thane creek, are wholesome. Flamingos get sufficient to eat and have ample locations to relaxation right here. Mumbai is presumably the one massive metropolis that sees migration of such an enormous variety of flamingos,” he says.

  1. The lake behind the NRI Advanced, Navi Mumbai.
 Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

The flamingo season in Mumbai is from November to June. 

“Mumbai will get each the Asian species of flamingos, the Larger and Lesser Flamingos, in enormous numbers due to a beneficial winter climate, habitat and meals in and across the Thane Creek,” says Vidyasagar.

  1. Thane creek flamingo sanctuary
 Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

The rationale why flamingos come to the Thane creek in massive numbers is as a result of availability of meals, the blue-green algae which is as a result of handled sewage within the creek, for instance. This algae additionally offers flamingos their pink color, says Vidyasagar.  

“These wetlands aren’t house to many birds but in addition stop flooding of the town. We have to cease building throughout these wetlands. Allow them to be,” says the 47-year-old.

  1. Mogra Nulla, Lokhandwala.
 Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

Over the previous two years, flamingos have began visiting the Malad creek too, which could be very polluted. This image speaks a thousand phrases, because it reveals how these birds are fending for meals amidst waste strewn round by people. 

“Over the previous seven years, I’ve seen a rise in reckless plastic air pollution. Folks ought to actually cease throwing waste round lakes. Even the dry grass surrounding lakes is house to many species of birds. We have to act responsibly and cease the air pollution,” says Vidyasagar.

  1. Thane creek flamingo sanctuary
 Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

Clicked in Could 2016, this image has been featured in a wildlife e book of the Corbett basis. Vidyasagar needs folks to see Mumbai’s stunning wild facet.

“Mumbai isn’t a concrete jungle. Folks ought to know that Mumbai has extra wildlife than simply the Sanjay Gandhi Nationwide park. Everybody ought to perceive the migration phenomenon. Solely then will they work in the direction of conserving these city wetlands,” he provides.

  1. Delhi Public College lake, Navi Mumbai
 Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

Moreover his Instagram web page, Vidyasagar additionally takes a choose few, who’re actually concerned with nature and conservation, on walks. 

“Folks journey to Kenya to see wildlife, Lake Nakuru to see flamingos, with out figuring out that the identical species involves their very own metropolis. Benefit from the wildlife round your individual cities. Wildlife isn’t just present in large nationwide parks, but in addition in wetlands, we simply have to go searching,” he says.

  1. Thane creek flamingo sanctuary
 Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

This image, which reveals a higher and lesser flamingo strolling collectively, has been featured by India Submit and likewise in a Banarasi silk saree as a motif. 

“The higher flamingo is taller, virtually 5 ft tall, whereas the lesser is pink, has a black and crimson beak and crimson eyes. These two species are discovered throughout Asia, Africa and Europe,” he provides.

  1. TS Chanakya Lake, Navi Mumbai
Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

This image reveals two higher flamingos combating. Equally, we additionally have to cease combating towards nature, says the photographer.

“The town has an incredible demand for land. We’ve got already destroyed the habitat. We have to cease additional destruction. We’d like not construct by way of forests and wetlands. Depart the pure habitat of birds and animals alone,” he says.

His footage through the years paint an image of how the town’s panorama has modified and the way it has affected birds.

  1. Thane Creek flamingo sanctuary
Image credit: Vidyasagar Hariharan
Picture credit score: Vidyasagar Hariharan

This image, which reveals hundreds of flamingos swimming, has been shortlisted for the Mangrove pictures awards 2023. It exemplifies the actual fact we are able to coexist with birds within the metropolis.

“We’re not letting them coexist. If we deal with conservation and construct golf programs elsewhere, we are able to stop migration of flamingos to different locations. Let’s deal with our pure wealth. We are going to succeed with collective efforts,” he provides.

Edited by Padmashree Pande



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