For many years now I am a
habitual birds watcher. Come vacation and I am outdoors to watch the birds, for
more than fifteen years now I have moved on foot, observing the surroundings of
Mumbai city and taking notes about bird-migration. In the beginning I felt the
bird-sounds were nothing but chaos to my core bye and bye. Then I began to
recognize the different sounds and could disguise between those of the Drongo,
Babblon, Lork, and Coppersmith etc.
That was when I became familiar
with bird-sound; I could read the jungle like a book. I was fascinated to
observe and learned about the various spacious of birds, their colours, shapes
and sounds, of which was awe-inspiring. Nature had a totally free hand in
decorating these birds. That is probably why birds have become men's most
affectionate subject of study.
In the vast crowded city of
Mumbai this affection enabled me to enjoy my pure love for nature. However, to
have it one must observe, study and regular practice is a must.
In Mumbai, the marshy areas of
Mahim, the Powai Lake and the Boriwali protected forest is a bird's paradise.
The surroundings of Mumbai are full of birds. Birds seen in Mumbai are seen all
over the State of Maharashtra. But the arrival of huge blocks of migratory birds
on the shores of Mumbai is mind-boggling and narity about the accurate travel
timing of those birds is the specialty of Mumbai. It appears to be a completely
independent universal arrangement. Migratory birds arrive during the winter and
are back at their original lands after winter.
There are about thirty thousand
spices and sun-spices of birds. Of them. About 2100 species are found in India
According to different regions, such as chilly-cols, planes, hills, forests or
sandy areas, there are specific spices of birds. Being sub continental in size,
India has different climate regions and so a large variety of birds of various
shapes and colours can be observed in these regions.
Birds are a very important link between man and nature. It is a farmer's friend
while harvesting the maize crop insect eating birds like are the best friends of
farmers. They had sworn over in thousand.
Rats, lizard, snakes, insects, grasshoppers etc. are the stable food of birds.
That's now they work to maintain balance in nature. Spoil this balance and the
effects may prove fatal, worn scientists. It is therefore essential not to kill
these birds but to observe them from close quarters, be their friends and
achieve the same bliss that I have continuously been roaming around in forest.
To watch these birds in Mumbai you need not take much trouble. They got up at
sunrise and begin their morning eating under the tree in soft sunrays. Birds are
seen in large numbers before it is too hot. One cannot recognize and distinguish
between birds in the beginning. To be familiar with the birds you have to move
around in the company of an expert bird watcher.
In view of the over expanding population of Mumbai it is doubtful whether these
birds will be able to survive here. It is essential to maintain the Mahim marshy
area in it's natural form. It is possible to observed migratory birds in the
newly created Nandadeep gardens near the highway. I could observe migratory
birds up till 1940. But encroachment is on the rampage pollution in on the rise
due to waste water/liquid in the area. Birds have begun to starve. In fact,
these marshes were a rare collection of migratory birds in large numbers. Birds
from very far away distant areas like Siberia in Russia, Europe, China and old
Asia are regular visitors here. Mumbai then becomes a rare site for bird
watchers who can conveniently study the migration and habits of these birds.
We can normally recognize birds like crows, house sparrows and pigeons, which
are seen around us in residential areas of small places. Bur in a city like
Mumbai you come across lot of colourful birds like Koel, sunbird, bulbul,
coppersmiths, tailorbirds etc. Due to the enhanced plantation move and
greeneries you can observe these sweet singing bird around one's residency as
well. They are seen around secretariat, Church gate, Choupatty, as well as in
the crowded areas like Ganmdevi, Grant road, Dadar etc. One must familiarize one
self with these birds and to get rare pleasure out of it. Not only that are
these birds very beautiful to look at, but they make some very sweet sounds too.
I have undertaken the writing of this book with the sole purpose of providing a
far blissful moment in the live some life of Mumbai's citizens.