Bird’s Paradise of Maharashtra !!
About Bhigwan Bird watching & Bird Photography Bootcamp :
Bhigwan is a small rustic town on the border of Pune and Solapur district in central Maharashtra, in India which is situated right on the Pune-Solapur Highway. South of Bhigwan town, exists a widespread backwater formed due to a man made dam built on the Bhima river. The dam is called as Ujni dam and the backwaters is spread over a wide region that forms a great wetland habitat.
There are two areas where one can see the migratory water birds- 1) Diksal-Parewadi area and 2) Dalaj– Kumbhargaon area. The semi-waste water in this Ujni dam backwater area has built very good wetland based ecosystem and helped agriculture also. The rainfall in Pune region decides the water level in Ujani dam. December to March is the best season to visit Bhigwan as by that time most of the migratory birds arrive and settle down.
One can expect various species of resident and migratory Ducks, Herons, Egrets, Raptors and Waders along with flocks of hundreds of flamingos. The huge quantity of birds at Bhigwan increases the chance of sighting almost all the prime bird species there and also creates great photographic opportunities for wildlife photographers. Any nature lover would surely enjoy this bird paradise of Maharashtra popularly named as Bharatpur of Maharashtra.
SHORT INFO & DATES
Outing Date : 1st – 2nd February 2020
Type : Bird watching & Photography Special
Duration : 1 Night / 2 Days
Day 1 :
Early morning start driving towards Bhigwan in private or hired vehicle.
Meet our tour leader at Bhigwan at 12.30 pm. Check in rooms and freshen up. Enjoy your yummy lunch prepared in local style.
Post lunch orientation and interactive session on basics of bird watching.
Around 3.30 pm enjoy the Hi tea and explore the training session on Tips and Hacks of Shooting birds in action.
Early evening start exploring the location by boat. We will be exploring major part of Diksal and Kumbhargaon by private boat in order to cover maximum species and also to reach as close to birds as possible. Observe a variety of bird species, compose some unique shots and also try your hands on birds in action during the first boating session. Late evening is a great time to compose some creative and silhouette shots against the setting winter sun. Post this boat safari engage in group discussion about today’s sightings and learnings.
Post dinner, we have a special treat for the nature lover in you! – a night trail to watch and photograph chameleons, nightjars, leopard geckos, owls etc. It is optional and complimentary for all.
Day 2 :
Early morning set off for the second boat safari. Try to take out and record maximum observations which will help you understand the basics of bird identification better. Morning being the active feeding time for most of the birds including raptors you can expect some good action shots during this ride.
Post safari return back to our base for breakfast. Post breakfast we will do hands on training for bird identification in surrounding area. This will be a pure bird watching field technique learning session and no photography would be allowed during this session.
Around 12.30 pm enjoy the homely lunch and start our return journey to respective destinations.
Arrival at Mumbai by evening with some great memories, learnings and photographs from Bhigwan
Tour Cost : Rs.4,000/- per person+Tax as applicable
For Lifetime Member : Rs.3,800/- per member+Tax as applicable
For Lifetime Membership Details (Rs.1000/- only), click here
1. Flamingo watching boat rides, bird watching trails, learning sessions as per the itinerary
2. Overnight stay in non AC room on twin sharing basis (basic homely accommodation)
3. All meals at Bhigwan i.e. 1 breakfast, 2 lunch, 1 Dinner and refreshments
4. All entries and permissions
5. Expertise charges of Naturalists
6. Complimentary night trail
1. Transportation from Mumbai to Mumbai (Will be arranged on cost sharing basis / One can directly report at Bhigwan)
2. Meals during overnight journey
3. Any extra expenses other than mentioned above
4. Applicable taxes
IMPORTANT :Local cuisine will be provided, please don’t expect luxury amenities. Food over here is delicious but homely.
Cancellation & Refund Policy :
1. If Tour/Event/Activity cancellation done by participant prior to 90 days of Tour/Event/Activity 80% of total price will be refunded.
2. If Tour/Event/Activity cancellation done by participant prior to 60 days of Tour/Event/Activity 60% of total price will be refunded.
3. If Tour/Event/Activity cancellation done by participant prior to 30 days of Tour/Event/Activity 40% of total price will be refunded.
4. If Tour/Event/Activity cancellation done by participant prior to 15 days of Tour/Event/Activity 20% of total price will be refunded.
5. If Tour/Event/Activity cancellation done by participant prior to 14 days or less of Tour/Event/Activity No refund will be provided.
THINGS TO CARRY
ID Card Compulsory (Aadhar/ Pancard/DL)
1. Dull Colored Clothes (Please don’t wear Bright colored Clothes, TRY TO GET AS CAMOUFLAGED AS POSSIBLE)
2. Sanitary Kit
3. Dry Food (snacks)
4. Torch (Must)
5. Personal First Aid kit
6. Cap, goggle, sunscreen, moisturizer etc.
7. Sport shoes or Kitos/ sandal
8. Electral powder / Glucon D
9. Binocular/Camera with lenses (Optional)
10. Water Bottle (3 liter must)
11. Odomos (Mosquito Repellent)
12. Tripod will be helpful to avoid shake as there will be low light
13. Umbrella or Poncho/Cap
FAQ’s For WILDLIFE SAFARI:
1. How many people will be there in Gypsy for a safari tour?
– All wildlife safaris will have 6 pax in one gypsy (Unless otherwise mentioned particularly regarding 4 or 3 sharing)
2. Can I get a Safari on 4 sharing basis?
– Definitely yes, but it will be on extra cost and you need to inform us well in advance.
3. What is the Child policy for Wildlife Safaris?
– A child above 05 years of age is considered as an adult for any safari permit all over India. Children below 05 years of age exempted from any safari costs and can travel free of charge.
4. Are Wildlife Safaris safe?
– Absolutely! Even if all the safaris are carried out in an open gypsy, there is hardly any danger from wildlife when travellers are siting inside the vehicle. Plus on every safari we would have a Forest guide with us along with the gypsy driver and our expert who will help out if any unwanted situation arises.
5. What are the safari timings?
– Safari timings change from season to season in different National Parks depending on the Sunrise and Sunset. Usually a safari lasts for 3-4 hours morning and evening.
Approximately the timings are:
Morning: 6.00 am – 10 am
Afternoon : 3.00 pm – 6 pm
6. What is a Core zone and Buffer Zone ?
– A tourism zone in any National Park is divided into two zones: Core Zone and Buffer Zone. Buffer zone lies around the periphery of core forest area. Most of the tourism/safaris takes place in core zone.
7. What is the best season to do a Wildlife Safari?
– The wildlife safari season starts from October-June. In Winter, from October to March one can have amazing birding opportunities with some migratory birds along with decent Tiger sightings and other mammals. March to May as the summer approaches one can have good tiger sightings along with other mammalian sightings and birding. So if you are a tiger centric wildlifer, we suggest you do a safari from March-May.
8. What are chances of Tiger Sightings during the safaris?
– Tiger sightings are dependent on tracking skills,knowledge of the forest along with luck & chance. Weather conditions also affect tiger sightings. But all our safari tours are well guided with experts and local guides who help track tigers along with other mammals and birds! This has resulted in extremely successful tiger sighting ratio for us compared to others. We also focus on overall biodiversity and hence we ensure that you take back some unique experiences with you if not tiger sightings!
9. Why does one has to book Wildlife Tours in advance?
– The safari permit booking starts 120 days before the actual travel date and this is governed by forest department. Plus there are limited number of gypsies that are allowed to enter each gate during every safari session. Hence securing your safari booking before others grab it is very crucial and needs to be done at the earliest.
10. What kind of facilities will be available at the destination we are travelling to?
– Though we are taking you to wilderness places away from luxury, we have ensured that you will get at least all the required basic comforts during the tour. Our resorts in all the wildlife safaris tours are Deluxe Category; comfortable and homely. All resorts are equipped with all amenities like comfortable bedding, hot/cold water, western toiletries, A/C facilities, laundry on request, doctor on call, mineral water, generator backup etc. Along with this, Veg-Non veg meals will be available in buffet style. Jain food provision, Wifi connection and Television is also available at most of the places.
11. What are the camera charges for safaris?
– Some National parks forest permit charge extra camera fees to the travellers who are carrying high-end cameras with telephoto lenses or video cameras for photography and videography. Rules are different for different forests. Eg: In Tadoba : A camera with lens of 250 mm and above is charged Rs.200 per safari.
12. I am not a professional photographer or frequent wildlifer…can i still enroll for safari tour?
– Yes,why not?? Every nature lover is welcomed on a safari tour! We feel every traveller must do a wildlife safari at least once in his lifetime! Its an experience that every individual must take in especially when India has such a rich biodiversity and Tiger is our national animal.
13. What are photography opportunities for someone who is keen on wildlife photography and will he/she get guidance for the same?
– All our safari tours are balanced providing ample opportunities for wildlife photography. It not only focuses on tigers but also on other mammalian species, birds, reptiles along with capturing beautiful Landscapes and natural beauty. Our experts also help the participants with guidance and tips for wildlife photography.
14. What will the climate/weather be like in/around the park we will travel to?
– The weather differs from region to region. Winters are usually cool with temperature ranging from 8-20 degrees while Summers are hot and dry with temperatures ranging from 25-45 degrees.
Some Do’s :
* Carry clothes according to the season of the visit. Carry clothes that will help you camouflage with the surroundings.
* Always carry original identity proof.
* Carry a fragrance-free Sunscreen.
* Always keep your phone on silent or airplane mode when entering forest.
* Cover your face with a scarf to protect it from dust.
* Also carry extra batteries, memory cards for camera and cover it to protect the camera from dust,rain etc.
* Always remain calm and composed when any sighting takes place. Remember patience is the only key.
* Your guide/mentor and locals know the area inside the forest better than anyone, so do co-operate with them.
* Do follow strict timings as given by your team leader to avoid delay in any activities as safaris are group events.
* Always respect your local guide/driver and their knowledge about the forest during an safari.
* For herping/monsoon wildlife tours, always carry wind-cheaters, proper clothing and shoes, water-proof bags. Also get rain proof covers for your cameras/binoculars etc.
Some Don’ts :
* Do not litter in forest and surrounding areas.
* Do not throw anything out of the gypsy.
* Do not yell, scream or wave at the animals.
* Do not wear brightly colored clothes or apply any kind of perfumes or deodorants.
* Never feed any animals.
* Do not play any loud music in vicinity of the forest area.
* No one is allowed to get down from the gypsy inside the forest.
* Do not argue with any person like forest guards, guides, locals or even travellers from another gypsy during the safari.
unique journeys…unique people…
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