Thane Creek Flamingo Sanctuary

Thane Creek is an inlet in the shoreline of the Arabian Sea that comprises the area between Mumbra and the Mankhurd-Vashi Bridge. It was widely used for trade in ancient times. It has been recognized as an Important Bird Area and the Thane Creek Flamingo Sanctuary sprawls over an area of 17 sq. km.

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Thane Creek Flamingo Sanctuary, situated between Vashi and Airoli Bridge, was declared a Ramsar Site on 15th August 2022. Covering an area of 17 sq km, the sanctuary provides a vital refuge for migratory water birds seeking shelter from the harsh winters up North. The sanctuary is a wintering home to an extensive population of both Lesser and Greater Flamingos, along with a variety of winter migrants such as shorebirds, ducks, and gulls. It’s an excellent spot for capturing pictures of waders and ducks during the winter.

Birding in the Sanctuary: The Mangrove cell of the Maharashtra Forest Department organizes boat rides in the creek, and walking trails are available from both the Airoli and Bhandup pumping station sides. The sanctuary is encircled by mangroves and other vegetation, making it an ideal habitat for a diverse range of birds, mammals, and marine creatures. Additionally, a Coastal and Marine Biodiversity Centre has been established in Airoli to promote conservation education and raise awareness about the importance of marine biodiversity.

eBird Hotspot:

Nearest Train station: Nahur & Airoli

Target species expected: In addition to Lesser and Greater Flamingos other waterbirds like Garganey, Northern Shoveller, Common Teal, Black Tailed Godwit, Curlews and Whimbrels, Pied Avocet, Plovers, Sandpipers, Stints, River Tern, White Winged Tern, Painted Storks are also found here. Raptors like the Greater Spotted Eagle, Oriental Honey Buzzard, and Shikra and Warblers like the Clamorous Reed Warbler, Booted and Sykes Warbler and Lesser Whitethroat are often seen during winter.

Best time to visit: Nov-April

How to book a boat ride: Visit Coastal Marine Biodiversity Centre in Airoli, Navi Mumbai. The boat rides are managed by forest officials. You may reach out to them on 9987673737 !!