A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed, and is, thereby, a true manifestation of what one feels about life in it's entirety. . . I believe in photography as one means of achieving an ultimate happiness and faith! - Ansel Adams

Monday, 20 December 2010

Ovalekar Wadi - abode of the butterflies (Part 1)




Ovalekar Wadi is a quiet little butterfly park (all of 2 acres) located off the Ghodbunder Road in Thane (near Mumbai). Home to about 70-90 different species of butterflies, it's a place about which I learnt only a few months ago! What pleased me the most was that as a resident of Mulund it wouldn't be too much of a bother reaching the place early in the morning.

I set out from my house at 6:30 AM on a November morning armed with my camera kit. No sooner had I stepped out, than it started raining!!! It was only a drizzle, but enough to indicate that for good part of the morning the sky would be overcast and hence the light poor - a photographer's nightmare!




Thankfully it wasn't all that bad either. Yes light was poor and we got to see far fewer butterflies than otherwise, but we had an overall positive impression about the place and resolved to come back again soon.
Intermittently, sunlight would filter in through the cracks in the clouds and we used that opportunity to indulge in some macro photography - flowers, insects, et al.

For a slide show of complete set of pictures from Ovalekar Wadi, please click here.



The park is a result of the efforts put in by Mr. Rajendra Ovalekar, the owner of the place. He has planted a variety of fruit and flower bearing trees in this patch of land, thereby creating a natural environment where butterflies can thrive without any need for enclosures. He very passionately showed us a butterfly cocoon, caterpillars, and also explained some of the finer aspects of butterflies.


As we were enjoying the sight of butterflies flitting about, flower to flower, we were very lucky to sight a Signature Spider trap a butterfly and entangle it in his web. That was the highlight of the visit. Apart from this we got some nice shots of flowers (with water droplets beautifully sparkling on their petals), mushrooms, a cat that seemed eager to catch a prey, moths, and butterflies such as - Blue Glass Tiger, Striped Tiger, Common Evening Brown, Common Palmfly, Common Crow, etc. - a fraction of the total population over there.





I believe the place is a must visit for butterfly lovers and people generally interested in nature macro photography. Spend a few hours here at leisure and you are sure to go back refreshed. We are fortunate that there are still a few patches of green left in & around Mumbai, thanks to spirited people like Mr. Ovalekar - lets enjoy them while we still have them!

Looking forward to your comments...

How to reach the place: Ovalekar Wadi is located off the Ghodbunder Road in Thane (West) (see map - http://www.wikimapia.org/14420146/Butterfly-Farm). Whether coming from Mulund Check Naka or Thane Station, ask for Parshvanath College of Engineering or Harmony Society in Owale. Just ahead of these landmarks there is a narrow winding lane on the left (be alert as you are sure to miss it), which takes you inside the village. Drive for two minutes on this lane and keep an eye out for a non-descript gate on the right (again you are sure to miss this). A board outside the gate reads Ovalekar Wadi but there's no mention of butterfly park. The entry charges are Rs. 50/- only and the park is open all day.

12 comments:

Pratibha The Talent said...

awesome photography and slide show is beyond adjectives.all the photos showed detailed photographic skills.great job.

The Legend Returns said...

Thanks so much Pratibha :) Comments such as these are truly an inspiration!

P@ul@mi said...

hey amazing pics. liked them. especially the spider and the web and the first butterfly.

The Legend Returns said...

Thanks so much P@ul@mi :) Really appreciate your comment!

joshi daniel said...

just awesome and the lighting really is so cool!

Anonymous said...

Picture perfect!
Try posting your blogposts to www.indli.com (links india likes - multi lingual) or im.indli.com(exclusive site for images)

Vikki

The Legend Returns said...

@joshidaniel: Thanks so much Daniel for those kind words :)

@Vikki - Thanks so much :) Am already using Indli!

Anonymous said...

Maneesh,

A friend went on a BNHS / CEC trip to Ovalekar Wadi Butterfly Garden last week and since he was very happy with his trip, he suggested I Google up Ovalekar Wadi.

I came across your blog while doing that Google saerch and I saw the entire slideshow. Amazing photos! Simply brilliant.

There is so much beauty in this world and then there are people like you who do all the hard work and use their talent to serve all the beauty on a platter to the rest of us. I wish rest of the humanity simply sat back and enjoyed your work. There would so many less troubles around the world if only people could sit back and enjoy your Slideshow.

You have replied to each comment and since it means so much to you, I thought it best to leave a detailed comment capturing how moving that slideshow was. Your photos had a very positive impact on me and thanks for making my day!

Regards,
Anand

The Legend Returns said...

@Anand: Thank you so much for those warm and kind words Anand. It is the appreciation from people like you that motivates me to write and keep taking interesting pictures. You indeed made my day! Thanks again :)

Rajesh Rachamalla said...

Hello,

Can you please send me your email id.

I wish to purchase butterflies and cocoons for the new gardens that is being set up by my clients.

Regards,

Rajesh Rachamalla

Fairdealsonline said...

Awesome Snaps. Kudos!!!


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ovalekarwadi said...

The garden is open only on SUNDAY (from 8:00am to 12:30pm) and the entry fees are now Rs.100/- per person and Rs.50/- for children below 10 years.

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This work by Maneesh Goal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.