Saturday, July 30, 2005


Sorry for the late report. Due to Bad weather we had problems with power supply and my net started functioning just yesterday.
Entomology outing to Nagla block, an extension of the Sanjay Gandhi national park on 23rd july was my first entomology outing. We had a great time there and saw ample of insects.
I had not revised much before the trail except for reading on the orders. I was quite excited as this was my first fultooo insect outing.
The first thing which caught our attention was the PLAIN TIGER on milkweed. We saw small caterpillar and egg on the underside of the leaves. Here shybha explained us how the caterpillar feeds on this poisonous latex. The caterpillar first makes a circular trench which enables the sap to concentrate on the other side of the trench. The Cp starts feeding on the central round portion which has minimal latex. It poisons itself in a small dose. Later when it grows big it stops the latex supply but cutting the main vein of the leaf.
We saw the female of the Danaid egg fly.
We saw a nymph of a grasshopper where shubha explained us about metamrphosis.
We sighted the enchanting Blue oakleaf butterfly which just melted our hearts.
Male common mormon
We saw the Striped tiger and Common grassyellow fluttering around.
We also saw the lady bird beetle. I donno why they call it so. Any idea?
Viren helped us with differentiation of Bugs and Beetles.
We saw a couple of frog bugs one after the other. The second one definitely confuse me. But they are really cute.
Then our fortune continued to shine on us as we got to see the Bird droppin moth pretty close.
Noctud caterpillar
Chinese Impatiens ( A beautiful small monsoon flowering plant)
Mitragyna parviflora, the mighty tree which is the food plant of Atlas moth.
Commelina benghalensis.
We saw a couple of cute looking weevils on a plant. I have only seen them in our lab bottles exemplifying pests.
We saw a carpenter bee in our magnifying jar and observed the pollen basket.
It was followed by the beautiful , unsteady and never stable Tailed jay on sitting on Wild tulsi which was giving as a tough time to photograph.
Humming bird hawk moth
Skipper butterfly
We saw a few weevil’s house. They were beautifully rolled up like a bidi. The weevils first give a cut to the leaf and then fold it and gradually make a roll like a bidi. Leaf starts drying up and falls off. Soon they rot and the grub ( young one) feeds on it.
Unidentifyied hawk moth caterpillar.
Yam hawk moth caterpillar
Bag worm moth
Plum judy butterfly
Slug butterfly caterpillar
Yam fly on Dioscorea
Forest cockroach
Malabar flat
Blister beetle
Bush cricket
Bark mantis
Looper caterpillar
A pansy caterpillar
Jewel beetle
Many Plant bugs on an single twig. Amazing sight.
Wooly bear moth caterpillar
Bush brown butterfly
Chocolate pansy
This is just half of the things that we Saw as my listing ended as I started of with photography using CEC’S camera.
Anil pinto and a few others wee fortunate to see a Oriental dwarf kingfisher. I was unlucky again.
Another interesting part was the encounter with another blue oakleaf specimen who made me and Doreen built a huge gap between the group and us. We took a few picts of it with open and closed wings.
Whenever I have been for plant trails I have seen many ppl crib aft a certain time abt how many plants to rem. I felt quite the same as soon my recording capacity of the brain stopped. There was so much insect life around , one cant imagine.

Thursday, July 21, 2005


Write will be put up soon. MEanwhile enjoy the images.

Monday, July 18, 2005


Yesterday that is on 17th August we* had been to a bird watching trip in Vasai Mudflats. It was the BNHSnorthmumbaigroup programme. The place has a small borderline of mangroves left as the whole place is converted into saltpans. This place can be very well seen from the train while traveling between Naigaon and Vasai. I have seen 20 odd flamingoes and Painted storks in these region from the train. Therefore with an objective to see some waders and Flamingoes we left for this place at around 8. The climate wasn’t so rewarding in terms of rain at the start of the trail. Therefore we did get good pictures of the trail.
To begin with my first bird was the flock of Black headed munias in the Swampy marshes. We proceeded further and were welcomed by calls of Ashy Prinia, Plain Prinia and the egrets. We saw these prinias at regular intervals. Mr.Murlidhar one of the persons in the trail captured beautiful images of them which u can see in this following blog.
There were 3 new birders in the group who were overjoyed to see the birds though there weren’t many. Walking further along we saw huge flock of egrets. A few of us also saw 3 painted storks flying at a distance. The other sightings included the western reef egret, Pond herons, Cattle egret, 2 flamingoes in the immature or non breeding plumage, Black winged stilt. We saw a raptor soaring above us and very close which is more likely to be an Honey buzzard. Other than these birds we saw the Derris trifoliata and Clerodendron inerme both mangrove associates flowering along the trail. We also saw a garden calotes virtually doing acrobatics in the Meswak bush. There were lots of mudskippers and Frogs in the muddy waters.
The overall trail was for apporx 2 and half hours. The weather all along for an hour and half was gentle and pleasant. We also saw a rainbow which displayed its 7 colors beautifully in the sky. Thanks to rakesh who spotted it while seeing some birds. The return part was incidental as it rained heavily to my satisfaction and dismay of others as they all had to travel back in train wet and soggy. Ofcourse no one complained and all enjoyed the rain. Trail yielded very less birds nevertheless it was fun as we got to interact with new naturelovers and also got the essence of rain in beautiful surrounding.
Samir has also taken some photos which he wil post soon.
Team- Myself, Mr.Paralkar, Mr.Murlidhar, Mrs.Jyotika kini, Samir, Kunal, Viral, Aparna and her father, Rakesh.

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