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Old 2nd December 2012, 20:36   #1
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Default PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Now this is not exactly a travelogue out of the city but what else can it be for an excursion to a place within your own city and for a purposeful time with the pink birds. Yeah many may have seen/heard the news that flamingoes have started flowing into Sewri mudflats and we couldn't resist the urge this morning. I sorely miss my Good Old Minolta roll SLR with the 300 zoom which has become a showpiece right now even if having the 300 zoom for such things and have to do with the Panasonic P&S these days. So the pics are not great but the experience is and worth every moment spent out there.

As usual, had decided to start early morning to catch the sunrise with flamingoes flying into the mudflats. Again, as usual, ended up starting late latif and ended at Sewri Jetty around 10:15 AM. There is different charm in catching the sunrise with them as they start flocking in. But we started when they had settled in on the Sewri mudflats. So anybody planning a visit here plan for a good amount of time from sunrise till as much as you want packed with some foodies to keep your energies up, but without disturbing the pink birds.

Many would be familiar with the Sewri mudflats and its whereabouts where flamingoes and other birds migrate for the Indian winter season.

For those who do not know, here is a small info on the Sewri mudflats. Sewri mudflats are the mangrove marshy lands besides the Sewri Jetty where you can find quite a few huge commercial carriers being repaired every now and then.

The route from Priyadarshini, Chembur (A) through Wadala (in front of IMAX Cinema) to Sewri Jetty (B) is as below, courtesy Google Maps with Satellite imagery. I would advise to go by the Sewri station signal route as that is the good wide route, presently which has metro and FLO work going on but which still doesn't hamper a good drive.

PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai-sewri-mudflats-sat-map-priychemsewristnsigmudflats-route.jpg

The following gives the concrete road from Sewri station signal (A) to the Sewri Jetty (B). Mind well, if you are coming upto here (A), it is better to take this route as this is well-done concrete road unlike the very bad unhygienic road through the village. Even for trekkers this is a good route even if a bit longer than through the village.

PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai-sewri-mudflats-sat-map.jpg

As you reach Sewri Jetty (B), you should park upto the point of (B) not beyond. At this point the Jetty pier begins and shows the mudflats on either side. The one on the right side is more even more approachable as you can walk upto the water over the uneven concrete slabs and stones laid out there and enjoy a closer view of the birds.

You can walk over the concrete jetty pier where you may find huge container ships lined up for repair works. You can even walk up on decks of these ships if they have ladders laid there, which we do mostly. If you can get access to the ship decks, you can get some fantastic sights of these birds.

The time to have these sights is ofcourse when it is low tide so the birds can settle on the mudflats. So before going there, check on the low/high tide times. The best time IMO is ofcourse the sunrise low tide time with all the morning hues in the skies with the fleets of the birds flocking in from the horizon. You could also catch good moments at the evening low tide times.

From here on you start enjoying the sights and keep your camera handy not to miss any precious moments.

The mudflats start showing up on either side. This is the Left Side Mudflats.

PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai-p1140750-large.jpg

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Wrecks of boating ships lying around on the shore of Left Side Mudflats

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Onto the Right Side Mudflats

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PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai-p1140763-large.jpg

Coming up more...although it may seem repetitive but you just don't feel enough

Last edited by parsh : 6th December 2012 at 19:45.
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Old 6th December 2012, 19:23   #2
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying in into Sewri

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Old 6th December 2012, 19:31   #3
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying in into Sewri

PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai-p1140796-large.jpg

The Lone Ranger far away

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Onto the Left side mudflats

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On the Ship's Deck, should have reserved a place for us earlier

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PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai-p1140809-large.jpg

Last edited by parsh : 6th December 2012 at 19:36.
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Old 6th December 2012, 19:40   #4
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying in into Sewri

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Last edited by parsh : 6th December 2012 at 19:43.
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Old 6th December 2012, 19:51   #5
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying in into Sewri

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Old 6th December 2012, 20:03   #6
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying in into Sewri

The tide has started moving in more speedily now at around 11 AM and the flamingoes start calling it a day (rather morning) at the mudflats and start flocking off there.

These guys start lining up to join their greater group a little farther on the shore.

PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai-p1140851-large.jpg

And then taking off one by one

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This is not a Mumbai's Bus Queue, its a take off line-up

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The Right Side Mudflats are now flooded with the High Tide moving in

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A Lone Ranger sits at the helm of the wrecked boating ship, probably thinking where to go now

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That ends our meeting with the pink birds this time around and we are sure to meet them soon again as their numbers grow in Dec-Jan-Feb.

Last edited by parsh : 6th December 2012 at 20:07.
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Old 7th December 2012, 13:26   #7
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Travelogues Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 7th December 2012, 14:46   #8
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Parsh, thanks for the fantastic pics and more importantly the details about this place.

I went there a few years back. Early morning, low tide. But unfortunately that day all the birds were sitting at the far end of the mangroves towards the Colgate-Palmolive side. All we could see were pink dots. I had a Canon P&S camera with 14x optical at that time, but even that did not help as they were just too far.

You seemed to have gotten lucky to see them from decently close distance.

A few doubts:
1. Heard that thre Sewri fort also offers good views of the birds. Any idea?
2. Also heard that from the Mahul side, you can hire one of the fisherman small boats and they take you closer to the birds. Any idea? Any pointers? I have drawn blank on this front everytime I researched.

Please let me know.

Thanks again for reviving my hope for this place. Would visit this season with kids.

Last edited by SDP : 7th December 2012 at 14:48.
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Old 7th December 2012, 16:03   #9
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Nice shots. Lovely to see loads of both Greater and Lesser flamingo's. Apart from the Flamingo's what other birds do you find here?
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Old 7th December 2012, 16:31   #10
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post
Parsh, thanks for the fantastic pics and more importantly the details about this place.

I went there a few years back. Early morning, low tide. But unfortunately that day all the birds were sitting at the far end of the mangroves towards the Colgate-Palmolive side. All we could see were pink dots. I had a Canon P&S camera with 14x optical at that time, but even that did not help as they were just too far.

You seemed to have gotten lucky to see them from decently close distance.

A few doubts:
1. Heard that thre Sewri fort also offers good views of the birds. Any idea?
2. Also heard that from the Mahul side, you can hire one of the fisherman small boats and they take you closer to the birds. Any idea? Any pointers? I have drawn blank on this front everytime I researched.

Please let me know.

Thanks again for reviving my hope for this place. Would visit this season with kids.
Thanks SDP.

Sorry to hear about your unfruitful stint there. They usually start pouring onto the shore quite close-by a little later with some wait and stay there until the high tide starts moving in. You will notice in my pics how they were close-by and vanished later on the RHS Mudflats. With SLR and a good zoom you could capture them even closer and better actions too. I have only a 12X Opt Pana P&S presently and these are the results at max zoom. A few professionals on the ship deck had huge (I mean really HUGE forget 300-600) telephoto zooms and I so envied them.

1. Heard about the Sewri Fort too, never tried. The view would be good but it will not give the openness and closeness to the birds like this.
2. Yes, did hear about the Mahul side boat ferrying to catch the birds but never tried. The villagers also know well now why and how many people flock to Sewri just for the Flamingos. So an enquiry with one of the boatmen may also reveal it. Although, I personally never tried it.

So IMO, the Jetty is pretty good vantage point combined with the ship decks. Especially you will love the closeness to the birds on the Right Side Mudflats. Try it again this time. They have started coming in large numbers already and likely to grow upto Feb-Mar. You will surely catch them. The crowd is also going to start increasing and also many bird nature orgs start organizing the events there with their groups. What I would suggest is, try it now on one of the next Sat/Sun while the crowds are still limited and you can enjoy their company at leisure and then again later when the numbers grow. Whatever time you get, it just seems so less time to spend with them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aravind84 View Post
Nice shots. Lovely to see loads of both Greater and Lesser flamingo's. Apart from the Flamingo's what other birds do you find here?
Thanks Aravind. A few birds that I can say spotted there are a few verities of Herons, Egrets, Gulls, Sandpipers, flycatchers etc.


One can get tide update from site such as http://tides.mobilegeographics.com/locations/658.html

Last edited by parsh : 7th December 2012 at 16:34.
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Old 7th December 2012, 17:19   #11
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Parsh, thanks a lot for the additional details.

Quote:
Originally Posted by parsh View Post
...The time to have these sights is ofcourse when it is low tide so the birds can settle on the mudflats. So before going there, check on the low/high tide times. The best time IMO is ofcourse the sunrise low tide time with all the morning hues in the skies with the fleets of the birds flocking in from the horizon. You could also catch good moments at the evening low tide times.
...
One more question, if you don't mind.
Should I be at the jetty when the low tide is about to start or is at its minimum or generally any time during the low-tide?
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Old 7th December 2012, 17:35   #12
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post
Parsh, thanks a lot for the additional details.


One more question, if you don't mind.
Should I be at the jetty when the low tide is about to start or is at its minimum or generally any time during the low-tide?
No worries man. Shoot as much and I will try answer. If I cannot answer somebody who knows in the forum will surely do.

If you are only there to watch the Flamingos and them only and nice and clear in daylight, then the opportune time will be from 8-11 AM, after an hour or so after low tide starts and upto sometime before the high tide moves in. The lower the tide, the more ground for them near the freshly bared shore by the receding tide and they will be more towards the receded water. So a mid-time will be best to catch them nearest. If you want more, sunrise setting, the birds silhouettes, if lucky, in the sunrise and all that and ready to spend more time munching and lurking around, then nothing better than the particular day's sunrise time.

Remember, as the Sun rises and day becomes brighter, the birds become clearer, the lens will start getting flushed with the sunlight refractions and would not be good for snaps. When you are shooting at them from the shore, they are in the direction of the sunrise. That is why also the ship's deck is a good vantage point. It offers a neutral vantage point, the lens is not flushed with the refractions, you get a good light on the birds too and can get good snaps capturing their original coloration.

Last edited by parsh : 7th December 2012 at 17:37.
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Old 3rd January 2013, 17:00   #13
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Great thread with useful info. I have been there on 30 Dec and then on 1 Jan. Have attached some of my pics. On 30th I caught the sunrise, but the light and smog made for poor pics. Things got better only around 930 AM.

I got talking with the policeman at the Jetty. He says the birds fly out during high tide. They then come back after the tide starts to recede. I saw this part on 1 Jan afternoon. They come closer to the shore after low tide, when the water starts moving in again. So he says, between low to high is the closest the birds get to shore.

This saturday, 5 Jan, low tide is at 11:14 AM IST / 1.13 m and high tide is at 5:35 PM IST / 3.40 m. Looks like a great time to be there. Lets see if the policeman got it right! I will laso check out Sewri fort and Colgate Palmolive as prospective sites.
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Old 3rd January 2013, 17:25   #14
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Nice catches there Karthik. Lets make this thread into a good informative to all on the Sewri mudflats and its exploits. SDP better hurry now though they should be there till March atleast.
The low tide is at 11:14 AM on Sat, 5 Jan. So the observation window will be from 8 AM - 2 PM (mid of low-high tides) and view should be better between 9 AM - 1 PM.

Last edited by parsh : 3rd January 2013 at 17:30.
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Old 3rd January 2013, 17:31   #15
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Default Re: PICS: Flamingoes start flying into Sewri, Mumbai

Quote:
Originally Posted by parsh View Post
Nice catches there Karthik. Lets make this thread into a good informative to all on the Sewri mudflats and its exploits. SDP better hurry now though they should be there till March atleast.
The low tide is at 11:14 AM on Sat, 5 Jan. So the observation window will be from 8 AM - 2 PM (mid of low-high tides) and view should be better between 9 AM - 1 PM.
You seem to have missed http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...ri-mumbai.html (Flamingo watching at Sewri-Mumbai).


karthik,
Nice pictures there! What gear do you use?

OT: we should seriously make an inventory of the lenses owned by Mumbai TBHPians. Would be interesting to rent/borrow from fellow BHPians rather than from the market.

Last edited by SDP : 3rd January 2013 at 17:35.
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