Bhigwan is a bird watcher’s paradise. It is full of so many birds – ducks, herons, egrets, gulls, robins, the list can just go on! I especially went to see flamingos. There are hundreds of flamingos at Bhigwan. It takes about 5 hours to reach Bhigwan from Mumbai as it is around 250 km away.
We left for Bhigwan at around 7 am from Vashi, and stopped for breakfast on the way at Khalapur. The journey was full of beautiful greenery and hills. We reached Kumbhargaon at around 1 pm. After a hearty lunch in the village, we started photographing the birds at the shore. I found a wide variety of birds – Grey Heron, Garganey Duck, Little Egret, Sea Gulls, Black Winged Stilt, Yellow Wagtail, etc. My friend had the great fortune to spot the Red-necked Falcon, which is pretty rare.
Then we took a boat ride for the flamingos. Within 5 minutes of starting the ride, we could see flamingos flying above us in beautiful formations. After a few minutes, I saw the highlight of my trip – Flamingos! There were hundreds of them flying and roaming all around the place. But we have to watch them from a distance. They are still scared of humans and so we can’t get too close and have to be really quiet.
It was truly magical to watch the birds flying over the sunset. I got great pictures and even greater experiences. After an hour or so, we came back for some tea and refreshments. It was then time for our night trail. The aim of our night trail was to photograph the Nightjar and a few chameleons. We could hear the nightjar calling but could not capture it with our lens.
Now it went too dark, and we headed towards our hotel in Baramati. We stayed at Amardeep Hotel in Baramati, which is around 2 hours away from the bird sanctuary.
The next day we woke up at 5 o’clock and set off towards the sanctuary again for another round of photography and a boat ride. The birds we photographed this time include the Osprey, Glossy Ibis, Brahminy Starling, Common Hoopoe, Kingfisher, Northern Shoveler, Asian Openbill, River Tern, Purple Swamphen, Purple Heron, and so on. After lunch, we came to the end of our trip and set off on our way back home.
Bhigwan is rightly called the ‘Bharatpur of Maharashtra’ with so many birds to set your eyes and lens on. I learned so many new things and made so many new human and bird friends on this trip. It was like witnessing a live Nat Geo episode!
I have also made a video of my best shots at Bhigwan and you can watch it here. Please give it a thumbs-up if you like it and subscribe to my channel. Thank you!
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