Dr. Shubhalaxmi was awarded for Excellence in Entomology and Isaac Kehimkar for Excellence in Lepidoptera Research.
Dr. Shubhalaxmi and Isaac Kehimkar were invited to deliver talks at the Refresher Course organised by MHRD, Pune and KHTM college, Nasik. Around 50 college faculties from various part of the country were undergoing 28-day professional development training programme. The topics covered during the full day event were; Diversity of Indian Butterflies and Moths & Applied Lepidoptera (Development of Butterfly Gardens and Parks)
We conducted kitchen gardening workshop for 10 participants. The workshop began with a presentation followed by a practical demo of composting and potting of sapling.
We conducted a flamingo boat ride for a private group of 3 people. The event was conducted by Preeti Dalvi. This activity was packaged with a visit to the mangrove interpretation center followed by a mangrove walk and finally an exciting boat ride to see flamingos. We saw thousands of flamingos along with other migratory birds.
Early morning all the 14 participants were set for the bird watching behind Kharghar Railway Station with Yogesh Chavan. The walk was full of bird activity. Within two hours of the trail, we spotted around 42 different bird species including grassland birds and water birds.
We conducted our second free bird walk at Nizampet Lake, Hyderabad. The lake is also called as Ramunikunta Lake. The walk was attended by 12 enthusiast participants including children. The walk was lead by Mr. Prasad who is an avid birder as well as a keen wildlife photographer. PC: Y.S.R.K. Prasad
On Saturday afternoon we started our unique camp at Prani Sanctuary near Bengaluru. All the 14 enthusiast participants including kids and adults started the Prani Sanctuary tour along with the Madhusudhan Shukla. This was followed by a wildlife quiz and night walk. We also celebrated the birthday of a participant, which was the fun part of the camp. In the morning we had a morning trail when animal footprint cast were taken along with several other activities. Overall participants enjoyed the camp and found it very informative. The camp concluded on Sunday afternoon with the beautiful group photograph.
We conducted ‘Birdwalk’’ at Bhandup Pumping station; one of the famous birding spots around Mumbai. Our 24 participants enjoyed the walk along with the Dr. Ketki Marthak and her bird stories. Participants learnt new things about birds and their habitat. While returning from the trail some enthusiast participants started spotting the birds and identifying themselves.
A nature trail to conduct a Butterfly Count was conducted along newly developed pathway around the Jarakbande Kaval tree park. The group saw tiger butterflies seeking alkaloids from damaged rattlepod plants. The group got to witness egg laying by emigrants and saw caterpillar of gull butterfly on caper plants. The trail was followed by a butterfly count conducted in groups inside the butterfly habitat of the tree park.
A group of 15 ventured on a hidden trail around the foothills of the Karnala forest. The beauty of this trail was that it was a canopied trail as most of the trail was shaded with trees and bushes and the group had the entire forest to themselves. The hidden trail provided an array of sightings from tree frogs to butterfly eggs. It took four hours for the group to decipher the dense forest trails. The group was thoroughly mesmerised with the forest bathing exercise they experienced.
A group of 31 students accompanied by their enthuisastic teachers joined us on a flowery trail at Kharghar Valley. Young as well as older students got enchanted with the plant and animal life they saw along the route. Dr. Shubhalaxmi and Isaac Kehimkar conducted the two hour walk.
On 30 September 2018, iNaturewatch Foundation conducted nature trail for students sponsored by the Udaan India Foundation. The trail was conducted by Preeti Dalvi and Wilma DCunha. Students learned about the mangroves and their importance for our well-being.
A group of 15 nature enthusiasts from different age groups joined us today on a sunny trail to Kharghar Valley. The group was led by Isaac Kehimkar and Dr. Shubhalaxmi. The group saw around 20 species of wildflowers. The group learnt about the association of flower colour, size and shape with that of their pollinators.
We conducted a butterfly walk at Jarakbande Kaval Forest Park for 11 participants. The walk was lead by Mr. Madhusudhan Shukla. The walk began at 8.00 am and concluded at 10.00 am. The participants enjoyed the walk as many found it to be very informative.
We conducted a nature trail for the college students sponsored by KPMG. Around 48 participants were present during the trail including students and the volunteers. The trail was conducted by Dr. Ketki Marthak and Ms. Preeti Dalvi.
We conducted our monsoon special insect safari in Nagala Block, Sanjay Gandhi National Park. Ms. Priti Choghale conducted the walk for 31 enthusiast participants with Ms. Preeti Dalvi. People joined us from the different parts of the city. The trail was full of insect action. Today was a hawkmoth caterpillar day. We saw varieties of huge hawkmoth caterpillars, spiders, moths, butterflies and other insects like grasshoppers and beetles. There were various wildflowers were flowering in the whole patch. Overall participants enjoyed the walk.
On the occasion of the ‘World Elephant Day’ in order to raise awareness about the largest land animal of India, iNaturewatch Foundation in collaboration with A Rocha Field Study Centre celebrated the day by exploring an elephant habitat on the outskirts of Bangalore. 15 enthusiast participants including both young and old, gathered at Kasserguppe, a village on the north-west boundary of the national park.
On the occasion of the ‘International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystems’, an inter-school and inter-collegiate competition on the theme of ‘Mangroves Conservation’ was conducted. Schools and colleges were encouraged to nominate their creative and talented students to participate in photography, slogan, poetry and poster making competition by contacting schools and colleges.
We conducted mothing camp at Karnala to celebrate ' National Moth Week'. A group of 12 enthusiastic participants joined the camp. The next day was very adventurous as they day began with breakfast in forest machan belonging to a tribal and the local guide took us onto a hidden trail on foot hills and other end of the sanctuary.The group leaders were Dr. V. Shubhalaxmi, Isaac Kehimkar assisted by Preeti Dalvi, Priti Choghale and Wilma D'cunah.
iNaturewatch Foundation conducted a mothing camp at Ramanagaram, Bangalore on 14th and 15th July, 2018. There were 2 nature trails, moth quiz, presentation on moths and overnight mothing on light sheet was a great experience for all the participants. The camp was conducted by Mr. Madhusudhan Shukala and Mr. Rachit Singh. All over we observed around fifty species of moths. During the nature trail varieties of caterpillars, beetles, spiders, birds and other flora and fauna were seen. All over 10 participants participated in our camp. The participants enjoyed the camp as many found it to be very informative and new experience for all. Morning trail was based on the insect theme, which was conducted by Mr. Madhusudan Shukla. There were around 15 enthusiast participants were present for the trail.
Sunday 23 participants from different parts of Greater Mumbai huddled at the Green Valley Park in CBD Belapur. Participants learnt about variety of monsoon special plants. Participants enjoyed crossing through two major streams inside the forest. Overall a fun and refreshing morning. People wanted longer trails which we promise to conduct from next month onwards.
We conducted a nature trail for 25 nature lovers at aarey colony. The trail started with a brief about iNaturewatch Foundation and Aarey followed by an observation game. Further, the participants explored the area and learned about the flora and fauna of the place.
Teacher Training Workshop: We conducted two sessions for JBCN International School, Borivali on 23 June 2018. Around 60 teachers attended these sessions which were conducted by Dr. V. Shubhalaxmi. The topics were; 1. Biodiversity Aichi Targets:This session was about understanding Biodiversity Aichi Targets. The teachers were engaged in group work to respond to the questions raised under each target.
Our monsoon special trail at Muthurayanabetta receives response from 20 participants. The group led by Mr. Madhusudhan shukla and Mr. Subramanyam Ramanathan. The walk was focused on monsoon special flora and fauna and landscape changes during rains. Participants thoroughly enjoyed the monsoon special walk with positive feedback.
Our monsoon special trail received massive response from 44 participants was all set for the trail at Kharghar Valley. The group split into two and was led by Mr. Isaac Kehimkar and Dr. V. Shubhalaxmi. The walk was focused mainly on the landscape changes, happens during rains. It was an adventurous learning experience and rain made it all the more wonderful and enjoyable.
K.J.Somaiya College of Science and Commerce, Vidyavihar invited Dr. V. Shubhalaxmi and Mr. Isaac Kehimkar as a resource person for the refresher course on ‘Biodiversity Conservation and sustainable Development’ organized by UGC Human Resource Development Centre, University Of Mumbai on 2nd June 2018 on the topic Insect Architecture / Insect diversity .
On 1st June we conducted planter making workshop for KPMG corporate. First, we had nature trail which was conducted by Ms. Priti Choghale, Mr. Isaac Kehimkar, and Mr. Prashant. followed by planter making workshop which was conducted by Ms. Wilma D'cunha and Ms. Preeti Dalvi. Overall 60 participant were attended the workshop at MNP, Sion.
A small group of individuals turned up to attend our first ever walk in Bannerghata. The theme was insects and the trail was led by Dr. V.Shubhalaxmi- the buglady. The trail started with an encounter with red bug which the participants learnt to handle which helped as an ice breaker. Thereafter the participants learnt about dragongflies and damselflies, variety of butterflies those were flying along the trail followed by a detailed account on termites and other social insects. The participants learnt on how to observe and identify butterflies. They also learnt about the operations of a social insect colony.
We conducted flamingo boat ride and Mangrove Walk for 43 nature enthusiasts. The walk was led by Mr. Isaac Kehimkar and guided by Ms. Preeti Dalvi. We divided participants into two batches. First, we visited the mangrove interpretation center, then we had small short film after that we had a mangrove walk. We saw different mangrove species like Meswak (Mangrove associate), Sea holly, Mangrove apple, river mangrove and Gray Mangrove (Dominant), etc. Besides mangrove, we also had a boat ride for flamingos watching. We saw a huge flock of both Greater and lesser flamingos. The participants enjoyed the walk as many found it to be very informative.
On a warm Sunday, 17 city gardeners huddled up inside our office to a fact checker workshop on kitchen gardening. Many were aspiring gardeners who wanted to get trained before they could start their home gardens. Our starting presentation on- Essentials of Kitchen Gardening set a firm and clear foundation which cleared several myths surrounding to the practices in kitchen gardening. The best myth busting session was the ‘Compost making’ where there were endless questions on do’s and don’t’s. The real charge up sessions were when each of them made planters out of plastic bottles for sprouts and potted chillies plant and took them back as souvenirs from the workshop. It was indeed a messy workshop but what’s fun of gardening without getting your hands,clothes and spaces not getting soiled!
We conducted Mangrove Walk for 100 students(Grade 5) of the Vishwjyot School. This was a free walk sponsored by the United Way, Mumbai. The students were divided into two batches. The 1st batch visited mangroves behind T. S. Chankya, while the 2nd Batch were taken to Talawe wetland. Several mangrove species like Mangrove apple, Sea holly, Gray mangrove, and Meswak were seen along during the walk. Students collected specimens of various shells and dead crabs.
We conducted short butterfly gardening nature trail for participants in Bengaluru. Around 20 participants attended the walk. Mr. Isaac Kehimkar led the group, and Mr. Faisal Haque volunteered during the trail.
The early morning 'Wetland Trail' at Sagarvihar Vashi was indeed full of surprises. The trail started at 8 am in the morning and ended at 10.30 am. A group of 12 nature enthusiasts gathered to learn about mangrove ecosystem. The walk was led by Mr. Isaac Kehimkar. Different mangrove species like Mangrove Apple, Milky Mangrove, River Mangrove, Sea-holly, Grey Mangrove and Meswak were seen along with different mangrove associated plants and various bird species.
A mangrove walk was conducted for two schools. This was a free walk sponsored by United Way Mumbai. Children had a great time learning about wetland ecosystem. 50 students (grade 7) of Sacred heart school, Vashi, and later 47 Students (grade 7) of Euro School, Airoli participated in the walk. The walk was led by Mr. Isaac Kehimkar and Preeti Dalvi.
A free lake safari at Kaikondrahalli Lake as a part of the 'Kere Habba Lake Festival' was conducted. The walk was attended by more than 30 participants. We started at 7.30 am in the morning and ended at 9.30 am. The walk was led by Mr. Madhusudhan Shukla. The walk was interesting, and participants could learn about the flora and fauna.
A mangrove walk for students sponsored by KPMG corporate was conducted. There were 37 participants including students and corporates employees. We spotted around 35 bird species, 8 butterfly species, spiders, garden lizard and insects. The butterfly spotting comprised of the Blue Tiger, Plain Tiger, Common Crow, Rounded Pierrot, Salmon Arab, Wanderer, Bluebottle and Emigrant. The show stealer were the school of fingerlings and the cast of crabs.
We conducted ‘Mangrove Walk’ at Talawe to show the support to the residents of the NRI complex to save the creek and mangrove which are going to be destroyed under the name of development. The walk was led by Mr. Isaac Kehimkar for 30 enthusiast participants. The walk was sponsored by United Way. Participants enjoyed the walk. Highlights of walk: Mangroves like Grey Mangrove, Sea Holly, Meswak, Mangrove apple, and other trees seen.
The early morning 'Wetland Trail' at Casa Rio Gold, Palava was indeed one full of surprises. The trail started with 5 nature admirers and ended with double the number of people. The unique landscape of Casa Rio Gold garden offers the wildlife lovers a blend of birding, butterfly watching, tree identification and more. The river ecosystem stretching alongside the garden was filled with a lot of bird activity
CELEBRATED WORLD WETLANDS DAY!
We conducted a mangrove trail for 103, grade 5 students of Vishwajyot School, Kharghar. The group was divided into two different batches. The walk was led by Mr. Isaac Kehimkar and Dr. V. Shubhalaxmi and guided by Ms. Shruti Nag and Ms. Preeti Dalvi. This walk was planned to celebrate World Wetland Day which falls on 2nd February.
Royal College of Arts, Science and Commerce invited Mr. Isaac Kehimkar to give a talk on butterflies and butterfly walk.
We celebrated another green birthday for Mr. and Mrs. Goyal’s family, for their son Eshaan. All the youngsters participated in the secrets of the natural world with nature trail, wildlife Quiz, Treasure hunt and animal footprints on the forest floor and many more
A group of 30 nature enthusiasts gathered to learn about mangrove ecosystem. The walk was led by Mr. Isaac Kehimkar and Dr. Shubhalaxmi. We saw different mangrove species like, Meswak, Red Mangrove (Rare Species of mangrove), Nipa (Mangrove Palm), and Gray Mangrove (Dominant), Agalocha etc. Besides mangrove we also got to see reptiles, butterflies and insects.