Monday, October 17, 2011

Top 10 Butterflying Destinations of Maharashtra

         Having traveled across Maharashtra.. Top to Bottom and East to West.. and keeping view of Trekker/wildlife enthusiast and mainly butterflier; following are the few destinations which I think are the best for Butterflying. I am putting this list so that it would help newcomers / amateurs / experts from other states to reach out and study butterflies of Maharashtra.

1. Tamhini Ghat :

This place is situated about 60 Km west of Pune. Its a ghat road descending downwards from Mulshi basin to Kundalika River basin. This entire area is spectacular from butterflies point of view. This place is at its peak in the month of February and Early March but along with that late August and September are also good. It is the time when rain recedes and the jungle is illuminated by bright sunlight.

2. Phansad Wildlife Sanctuary:

Its a sanctuary about 30Km south of Alibag. It is situated on the way from Roha to Murud. This forest used to be the reserved hunting forest for Nawab of Janjira. This is a pristine semi-evergreen forest with small evergreen forest best having substantial old growth trees. This has resulted into fantastic diversity. Every month of the year will give you some surprise record.

3. Sanjay Gandhi National park:

Being blend of various ecosystem, Mumbai used to be fantastic destination for Naturalists. But with the high growth in population of Mumbai with heavy industrialisation and subsequent pollution, biodiversity of Mumbai has certainly taken a shock. But still the areas like Sanjay Gandhi National park which are completely surrounded the buildings, act like an oasis for the wildlife. Hence whenever you go to SGNP from various starting points, one can be sure of finding something nice. Peak season of this area is also February and Early March.

4. Vasota Fort:

Vasota fort is a jungle fort situated in the Koyna wildlife Sanctuary which is now part of sahyadri tiger reserve. This fort is completely isolated by dam water on one side and western ghat cliff from another side. Hence there is least disturbance in this jungle. When Dam water level goes down a bit, it opens sand bar along the coast and this sand bar is one of the favorite hanging out spots for butterflies. If you visit this place anytime after 1st november to 1st June, you can be sure of finding good variety of butterflies. The important thing is that since these butterflies will be busy in mud puddling, it becomes an easy job to photograph species like blue mormon, red helen which otherwise would hardly stop for you.

5. Dajipur Wildlife Sanctuary:

This Sanctuary is situated in the backwaters of Radhanagari Dam. The closet main city is kolhapur which is about 90 Km from the Dajipur Gate. There are several types of forest in this sanctuary and hence good diversity as well. In this sanctuary there is a small check dam on a stream and the place is known as "वाघाचे पाणी" means "Tiger's Water." This place is particularly good of butterfliers.

... more destinations will follow soon....

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