“3 Prime Locations to watch flamingos in Mumbai, Priority wise they are Sewri, Mahul Creek (Chembur) and Naigaon. This are some special locations for flamingo spotting, the famous migratory birds who fly down to Mumbai in group of thousands in Winter and stay back till monsoon..”
Location 1 : Sewri Mudflat
Mumbai’s winter guest, those pink feathered flamingos are one of the main bird watching attractions between citizens, hobby and professional photographers. They were first been spotted in late 1980′s. This special place called sewri (Also pronounced as ‘Shivdi’) has 10 square km mud flat location quite near to station, which is an ideal location every year attracting this long legged pink spotted flamingos migrating from Gujarat’s Kutch and other locations in groups of thousands. About 7000 to 10000 of this bird can be seen after November and makes and awesome scenic in afternoon and also with setting sun. Just think those flamingos who eat and cleans the waste of that mudflat migrates from hundreds of km, and indirect help to human, and how much time we spend in caring them. Apart, their are many other species that can be spotted here like Terns, Purple Heron, Green shanks, Kingfishers, Egrets, Sandpipers, Some varieties of sparrows and Pariah kites.
Every year BNHS (Bombay Natural History Society) keeps a day dedicated to this special bird, called ‘Flamingo Festival’. Basically the schedule time for flamingo watching is in month of March / April which they declare on their website. One of the contact numbers hope not outdated is +91-22-22821811 to inquire about the same. The basic theme of Flamingo festival if to educate citizens about how important these birds are to our life, how this wetlands (mudflats), mangroves forest are our life savers and why encroachment and dumping debris is dangerous to such bird species. Bird watching brings citizens of Mumbai towards nature, out of city concrete life and to make to understand importance of Eco-system and how to be Eco-friendly. Various articles in leading newspapers also tries their best to reflect the importance of such wet zones and how the industrial waste, oil splits and sewerage is dangering our human life and not just those beautiful birds. Very soon as expected this bird watching destination will be declared as sanctuary and will be protected by forest department and some cruel activities like flamingo hunting etc will be taken care of. You should also be interesting in knowing about Mumbai bird race events organized annually for those bird watchers and lovers.
How to reach Sweri Mudflat : Sewri is located on Harbour Railway Route in Mumbai, Between Wadala Junction and Cotton green station, If you are on Western Route, Bandra will be an ideal station if commuting via Local trains. Check the railway network sewri map on this page to get and idea.
Location 2 : Mahul Creek, Near Chembur
Another famous creek for flamingo bird watching is at Chembur, a station on Harbour Railway Route (Refer Google Map above and Rail Network Map). This main location where flamingos are spotted is at Mahul creek inside Mahul Village somewhere near/connected to Chembur. Take guidance from map and help from near by villagers on how to reach mahul creek. Once their you can see a small muddy road creek with boats of fisherman, some nets around with lots of Mangroves. After Sewri, this is another peaceful location that attracts this migratory species, you are free to take photographs, enjoy the view at best closest via your binocular and spend some time with nature seeing this long legs half inside mud with long curved mandible digging those mud for food.
How to Reach Mahul Creek : Get Down to Chembur via Road, Local Trains or Private vehicle and head towards Mahul Village, take guidance and help from local villagers and reach the creek.
Location 3 : Between Naigaon Vasai Green Belt
Now, no many people knows about this location which do have some hundreds if not thousands of Flamingos in groups every winter between November and December, which lasts till late February and fly away to sewri or some other destinations like Mahul. Naigaon is 4th station from far north end station called ‘Virar’ on western railway route. This Location to watch flamingo is exactly between Vasai Road and Naigaon station in WEST, nearest location being Naigaon. A small village connected with loots of trees and farming fields can be seen from Local Trains and thus are those spotting of beautiful pin feathered birds. Now one should not get confused between Egret (Bagula in Hindi)and Flamingos as from a distance they look quite similar. Below is the Picture taken from running local train when they were spotted.
Sewri and Chembur Map For Reference