Mumbai’s Pink Ballet – The Lesser Flamingo Courtship Dance

Humans dance to music. Flamingos dance to mate!!

A Dance of Love and Display:

The Lesser Flamingo’s courtship dance is a synchronized spectacle. Males, with their brighter pink plumage, stand tall and bob their heads rhythmically. They extend their necks in elegant S-curves, sometimes accompanied by soft trumpeting calls. Females, adorned with a slightly duller pink, respond with similar head-bobbing and wing-flapping displays.

They have 136 different combinations of dance. This elaborate dance serves two purposes. Firstly, it allows males to showcase their fitness and stamina to potential mates. The more vigorous and coordinated the dance, the more likely a male is to attract a female. Secondly, the synchronized movements strengthen the social bonds within the colony, fostering cooperation and breeding success.

The Lesser Flamingo Courtship Dance

Witnessing the Spectacle in Mumbai:

The good news for Mumbai residents is that you don’t have to travel far to witness this captivating display. Just visit the nearest birding hotspots in April & May months to see Lesser Flamingos and their courtship dance:

  • Thane Creek Flamingo Sanctuary: Boat tours offer a unique perspective on the colony and its mesmerizing dance rituals.
  • Palm Beach Road: One of the best places in Mumbai to observe the dance is the wetlands behind NRI colony, Delhi Public School & TS Chanakya. 
  • Bhandup Pumping Station: In case you don’t wish to go for a boat ride, explore the large wetlands, and the main pond in Bhandup Pumping Station during low tides.

The Lesser Flamingo Courtship Dance

Tips for the Best Experience:

  • Plan your visit based on tide timings: 2 hours post-peak high tide is just the best time to observe this ritual, the soft mud allows them to manoeuvre and showcase their dance skills. 
  • Bring binoculars or a zoom lens: Enhance your viewing experience and capture stunning photos of the flamingos in action.
  • Maintain a respectful distance: Avoid disturbing the birds with loud noises or sudden movements.
  • Carry lots and lots of water and some light snacks.

 So, grab your binoculars and head out on a birding adventure with Jungle Buddies Tours! Let’s explore the wonders of the avian world together.

A special thanks to Souvik Kundu for allowing us to use these photographs.

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2 Thoughts to “Mumbai’s Pink Ballet – The Lesser Flamingo Courtship Dance”

  1. Narendra Bhiwandikar

    Very informative and Good information .. Thank you so much JB 👍🏻👍🏻❤️

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