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This blog captures the life experiences of the Enigmatic India team in the beautiful and enigmatic country of India.We capture our experiences through our writings, photos and products that depict the very essence and fabric of India.Through this platform, we invite you to join us in our journey as we explore.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Trip to Butterfly Park- Ovalekar Wadi, Thane

Blue Tigers
Hidden in a quiet lane off Ghodbunder Road in Thane is a butterfly park called Ovalekar Wadi. A friend told me about this park. I had never visited a butterfly park and the images that came to my mind was of enclosed netted spaces.

Striped Tiger
Five of us set out on an early morning in August. The Park is open only on Sundays from 8 AM onwards. We were in for a surprise. Rajendra Ovalekar the owner of this park has taken pains to maintain natural surroundings for the butterflies. There are a wide variety of fruit and flower bearing trees. Care is taken in rearing the larvae of butterflies in containers. This ensures that the larvae survive the difficult phase of their life. 
   Common Crow

Rajendra Ovalekar told us about how he started the park- 5 years back he attended a program on butterflies by BNHS - Bombay Natural Historic Society . He was so inspired that he decided to convert the agricultural land that he had into a butterfly park. His parents stay in a house within the park and he visits over the weekends. During the set up and for the first couple of years he got a lot of support from Isaac Kehimkar an avid naturalist and butterfly expert.

Mr Ovalekar was there to take us for a tour around the park explaining the life cycle phases of butterflies- we saw pupa, cocoons and caterpillars. The park is home to more than 100 species of butterflies.  We spotted quite a few varieties of butterflies. These included:

Striped tiger
Plain tiger
Blue tiger
Common Jezebel
Common sailor
Common crow
Great Eggfly
Common rose

Peacock Pansy

Common baron , to name a few

The light was just perfect. The previous day there were rains and we were quite apprehensive. We spent a few hours  photographing. Realized that photographing butterflies needs loads of patience and quiet. A little sound and off they go. It was a very refreshing experience. If you want to photograph then its a good idea to go as early as possible. Butterflies tend to get more active as the day progresses.

A wonderfully refreshing place that feels completely out of the world. We spent some time sitting on the grass and observing. There are also arrangements in the park to have home made breakfast made by Mr. Ovalekars family.

A highly recommended place. It is located at Owla village , Ghodbunder Road, Close to Suraj Water Park.  Don't be deterred by the dusty potholed filled road off Ghodbunder road- that lasts for a short while. The park has a car park. You can find more details about the park in their Facebook page

(Contributed by Jayashree Mishra)

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