Monday, September 12, 2011

Report : Rajmachi Nature Trek

Amidst the natural calls of Brown Headed Barbet, Grey Jungle Fowl and Greater Coucal, my mobile alarm at 6`o clock performed the role of perfect alien and played no difference to us since we were little tired and decided to sleep for another extra hour, which was beyond the schedule. This was the story of the second day`s start at Rajmachi, which had heavy cloud gatherings on atop the fort, for which we were planned to explore on this day, but couldn`t. The first day, given us many sightings, few of them lifer, few were uncommon and few were expected but the second day, was not that much promising.

The Rajmachi Nature Trek got 6 participants, a very decent number, ensured good sightings. Specially, at such famous trekking destinations, where hoards of people drop in during weekends and disturb the whole environs, we were much comfortable in this size.

The 10th September, 2011, Sarang Naik, Tushar Parab, Sushant More, Manish Nakhwa, Advait Ghaisas and me started our trek from Tungarli village, after having our breakfast at Lonavala city, at sharp 9.15am, as pre-decided. Rajmachi, was a long trek, covering 16 Kms of uphill walk, the closest point for Mumbaikars in Western Ghats. The sky was filled with clouds with slight rains and limited light for camera savvys. Our day started with as usual Red Whiskered Bulbul right at the base of Tungarli Dam and finished with a filmy type fight between multiple frogs at night, for an earth worm. The stunning Ulhas Valley and River, mesmerized all of us, with its fate, further down at Karjat, where it is most polluted. The short discussion with the local villager, confirmed the number of wild denizens have declined over the last 4-5 years, along with tree cover as well. He affirmed that Hyeana, Leopard and wild boar are still seen at occasions and predators were blamed for carrying away the local poultry occasionally. He denied to have seen vultures from last few years, which used to be abundant here, earlier according to him.

The second day 11th September, was spend much of trekking down on slippery hill slopes, on the way to Kondane caves and village, resulting in sudden fall on mossy rocks and getting hurt and obvious victims were Sushant, Advait and me. This day given us unforgettable sighting of an Orange Oakleaf, which was in my wish list, and was earlier recorded from Bhimashankar WLS. The surprising sighting was of Karvi, a single shrub, seen in blooming.

The two days nature trek went absolutely fine and all of us were very happy with the experience that we all had and promised to meet each other for our next trek to Kas (Maharashtra`s valley of flowers), Satara, scheduled in this month end.

Classified Sightings:

Birding –

Jungle Bush Quail

Grey Junglefowl

Indian Peafowl (heard)

White Cheeked Barbet

Brown Headed Barbet

Grey Hornbill (heard)

Small Blue Kingfisher

White Throated Kingfisher (heard)

Eurasian Cuckoo (heard)

Greater Coucal

House Swift

Alpine Swift

Laughing Dove

Spotted Dove

Yellow Footed Green Pigeon (observed at Karjat station)

Oriental Honey Buzzard

Pair of Common Kestrel (probably have killed a wolf snake)

Little Cormorant

Indian Cormorant

Rufous Treepie (Heard)

Large Billed Crow

Eurasian Golden Oriole

Large Cuckooshrike

Common Iora

Malabar Whistling Thrush (Heard)

Oriental Magpie Robin

Pied Bushchat

Dusky Craig Martin

Red Vented Bulbul

Red Whiskered Bulbul

Ashy Prinia

Grey Breasted Prinia

Jungle Babbler

Sunbird (?)

Wagtail (?)

Scaly Breasted Munia

Butterflies –

Plain Banded Awl

Malabar Spotted Flat

Common Spotted Flat

Tamil Grass Dart

Rice Swift

Chestnut Bob

Tailed Jay

Common Mormon

Blue Mormon

Common Grass Yellow

Common Jezebel

Glassy Tiger

Common Crow


Common Castor

Chocolate Pansy

Great Eggfly

Lemon Pansy

Orange Oakleaf

Blue Oakleaf

Common Hedge Blue

Flora- (the name in brackets refer to local marathi name)

Costus speciosus (Koshta)

Clerodendrum serratum (Bharang)

Hibiscus Tetraphyllus (Ran bhendi)

Helicteres isora (Murud Sheng)

Carvia callosa (Karvi)

Ecbolium ligustrinum (Ekboli)

Lantana Camara (ghaneri)

Momordica dioica (Kartoli)

Thunbergia fragrans (Chimine)

Curculigo orchiodes (kali musali)

Curcuma Pseudomontana (Ran halad)

Hypoxis aurea (Sontara)

Zingiber neesanum (Nisam)

Eriocaulon sedgewickii (Gend)

Pinda Concanensis (Panda)

Begonia Crenata (Kapru)

Celosia argentea (Kombda)

Trichodesma indicum (Chhota kalpa)

Corchorus olitorius (Banpat)

Chlorophytum breviscapum (Phulkadi)

Habenaria longicorniculata (sheput Habe-amri)

Impatiens balsamina (Terda)

Impatiens lawii (Jambhala terda)

Exacum lawii (Lahan chirayat)

Exacum pumilum (Jambhli chirayat)

Aeginetia indica (Gulab-dani)

Conscora diffusa (Kilwar)

Senecio bombayensis (Sonki)

Commelina haskarlii (Kamalini)

Acacia Torta (Chilarwel)

Commelina diffusa (Gandologi)

Paracaryopsis lambertiana (Hirvi nisurdi)

Eclipta Prostrata (Bhringaraj)

Murdannia Spirata

Murdannia wightii

Murdannia versicolor

So, this was an end of the trip report………

Best Regards

Rajesh Sachdev

1 comment:

Mitr Friend - Bhushavali said...

Goodness gracious.
That's a long list of bird sightings at a single go.
You're lucky.
Loved your shots.
Came across yours searching for other travel bloggers and liked yours a lot.
Do drop by mine sometime.
And do follow if you like.. :)
Bhusha's Travelogue