Monday, January 31, 2011

Nandur Madhmeshwar Bird Sanctuary.

The Back-Water area of  Nandur Madhmeshwar Dam.
          Nandur Madhmeshwar Bird Sanctuary is located in Niphad Tehsil of Nashik district in Western Maharashtra. A stone pick up was constructed in 1907-13 across the river Godavari just below the confluence of Kodwa and Goadavari rivers at Nandur Madhameshwar. The water level is always fluctuating in Nandur Madhameshwar Lake.
           The water released from Gangapur and Darana water reservoirs is stored at Nandur Madhameshwar and subsequently released from here through canals for irrigation. Silts and organic matter that are carried away with water flow are accumulated in the lake, due to which islands and shallow water ponds have been created. This resulted in the biological enriched conditions by which aquatic vegetation has been stabilised. Thus the site has turned into good wetland habitat aptly described as 'Bharatpur of Maharashtra".
          Nandur Madhmeshwar is nice place for birding, but it not gives better opportunities for photography, because the area of back water in Nandur Madhmeshwar is very vast so if birds are get disturb then they going inside the lake.

How to Reach Nandur Madhmeshwar?
1) State Transport Buses bound for Sangamner and onwards from Nashik take you to Sinner in 45min and then you can travel through ST Bus or you can take local transport (yellow n black jeep or omani) from Sinnar but it will drop you at Manjargon. Take a walk to the left around 1.5 km there you reach at NandurMadhmeshwarDam. NandurMadhmeshwar is a vast area. The birding spots are as far as 5 km in NandurMadhmeshwar. So this mode is not convenient.
2) The next possible option is personal vehicle. In Nandur Madhmeshwar important birding locations are located in 5 km area. The road is not too good. You can park vehicle at convenient parking spot at dam side near information center or near Chapadgaon machan.
3) For the more adventurous guys two wheelers can be used to reach this place from Nashik. It is bit unsafe, the distance can be covered in less than 1 hour as the road is full of traffic till Sayakheda-fata & Sinnar after that traffic is not a problem. Two wheeler is convenient to cover the Nandur Madhmeshwar area.

There are two ways to reach at NandurMadhmeshwar:-
1.Nashik-Aurangabadnaka-Nandurnaka-Sayakhedafata-Sayakheda-Chapadgoan-Manjargoan- NandurMadhmeshwar (I prefer this rout. Its nearest from Nashik. (~48km))
2.Nashik-Nashikroad-Sinnar-Manjargoan- Nandur Madhmeshwar. (This root is useful for birders coming from Pune side.)
          There are total four machans in Nandur Madhmeshwar sitting on which you can observe the birds, After you reach at  Nandur Madhmeshwar Dam you will find 1st  machan at left side. you can take overview of the back water of this Dam & observe the birds. for reaching to the second machan you have to walk left side, it takes 5 to 10 mins. You can observe lots of forest birds and wetland birds. (Note: for reach at 2ndmachan you have to cross some farms at that time you should take care of crop’s. Please do not harm these valuable plants.). Go to the Manjargoan side then after 3km of ride you can see one green board of forest Dept. take right turn then in few minutes you can reach to the Chapadgaon machan. There are two machansfrom where you can observe the birds. In the season of migration the forest Dept. provides a tent free of cost if you are planning for a night stay. Gangaram & Amol are giving good guidance in this area if you require. These two guys are locals and trained birdwatchers by forest department.

These is only two patch 

           I and my friend lalit visited Nandur Madhmeshwar at 1st   January. We  reached at 7am. 1st we visited Chapadgoan side and then dam area. That day I observed 57 species of birds. The lake was full of ducks (approx. 3000) at 8 am. I observed Ruddy-shell ducks, Shovelers, Northern Pintails, Spot-billed Ducks, Comb Ducks, Common Coots, Eurasian Wigeons etc.

Ruddy-Shell Duck.

(this is a mainly migratory bird.the Ruddy-Shell Duck is still common across much of its Asian range. )


           After that I went to 2nd machan of Chapadgaon. There was a flock of small Pratincoles (approx. More than 70). They were in flight. I took some shots of them. 
Small Pratincole.

 (The small Pratincole is a resident breeder in India, Western Pakistan and southeast Asia. It breeds from December to March on gravel or sand banks in rivers, laying 2-4 eggs in a ground scrape.)

           There was a couple of  Ruddy-shell Ducks which was disturbed due to some guys who were making noise over there, In between that purple heron’s were fighting for territory or food, I can’t understand that. In this session, I observed that the Purple herons are in large numbers compared to the Gray herons, at the other side ashy prinias are trying to catch some insects. On my left side 1 pair of black ibis was taking breakfast of morning. After 30 mins I decided to go return back to the 1st machan of chapadgaon at the same time I saw a flock of common cranes. 

Common Crane.

 (It is a large, stately bird and a medium-sized crane.It breeds in wetlands in northern parts of Europe and Asia.)


                 Now it was time to observe the forest birds. I saw 6 collored doves, Common Stonechats, Pied Bush-chat, Black Drongo’s, Wire-Tailed Swallows, Large Gray Babblers, Paddy-field Pipits,Rufous-tailed  lark and the most beautiful ‘flock of Red Avadavats’. In all this time a marsh harrier was trying to catch some breakfast. It was 9.30 am I decided to leave chapadgoan.  

Common Stone-chat.

 (The wintering range of the Migretory Bird is from southern Japan south to Thailand and India.)

Paddy-Field Pipit.

 (Paddy-field pipit is a resident breeder in open scrub, grassland and cultivation in southern Asia east to the Philippines.Although among the few breeding pipits in the Asian region, identification becomes difficult in winter when several other species migrate into the region.)

Rufous-Tailed Lark

 (the Rufous-tailed Lark is a ground bird found in open stony country and low rocky hills in India)


I reached at Dam side there I found a flock of 100’s of ducks. Coots, spot bill and 6 comb duck. After this we started to walk on the wall of dam then I saw Greater spotted Eagle sitting on the tree. I tried to take some snaps of it but one crow came over there and disturbed it; I took some snaps in flight.

Greater Spotted Eagle in action

 (This is a species of fairly wooded country, which hunts small mamals and similar, mainly terrestrial prey. It breeds from northern Europe across Asia, an winter in southeastern Europe, the Middle East  and South Asia.)

Greater Spotted Eagle.

At the end of the wall I spotted a pair of Glossy Ibis, 2 pair of Black Headed Ibis that was nice thing for me. I spot three species of Ibis in one day and at one place. That was happy ending of my trip at 12 am we left Nandur Madhmeshwar. 



  1. it looks like perfect place for bird watching
    Last year we spend two days in Bharatpur that was great experience

    I was not clear about this location but you explained everything perfectly. Thanks for this

    I may approach you over your email if some other information required. Hope it is okay for you


  2. Gorgeous photos! Love the composition and great lighting.
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  3. where these birds breed?, are they protected from dogs.

  4. Dormetory accomodation of 5 beds. Quite clean. No food or even tea arrangements,
    talks volumes about our tourism dept. NOT INTERESTED in tourist revenue.

  5. dear Purushottam Nice description of Nandur Madhyameshwar bird sanctuary. Nice pictures too.
    would like to connect with you and explore visiting this area. I stay in navi mumbai
    kv subramanian

  6. Nice post. Nandur Madhmeshwar is nice place for birding and perfect place for twitcher. If you are bird lover then get list of wildlife sanctuaries in Maharashtra at

  7. One of the most stupid crowd ever seen at Nandur Madhmeshawar last year. People visit there while they play songs loudly on mobile phones, kids play there as if its a garden. how management allows such non sense I wonder. I am thinking not to visit this place again & waste my valuable time.

  8. Does the campsite still exist? Is it safe to stay there?

  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  10. Very nice article thanks to share with us. Nandur to Mumbai is 202 kilometre only by road.

  11. Nice place for birding...heaven on the earth... Just keep silent & watch bird's, there style, beauty 😍👌

  12. Sir Please information for nandurmadhmeshwar in marathi langauge

  13. What is the good season to visit Nandur Madhmeshwar??

  14. Thank You very much for sharing your great experience with us. It really beautiful place to visit, nice pictures. The distance from Nasik to Nandur is 268 KM by road.

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