Mumbai: Duo spots rarely seen owl inside SGNP after 14 years

The four Indian Eagle Owls — two adults and two juveniles — were spotted and photographed by Bhavan’s College students and part-time naturalists Yogesh Arvind Patel and Sandip Kachhap near Kanheri Caves on April 6

There is good news for birders across Mumbai. Two bird watchers who visited the Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) last week, spotted and photographed four Indian Eagle Owls on April 6. The birds were sighted near Kanheri caves, 14 years after they were last spotted.

What a catch! One of the four Indian Eagle Owls captured on camera near Kanheri caves by the bird watchers on April 6. Pic/Yogesh Patel
What a catch! One of the four Indian Eagle Owls captured on camera near Kanheri caves by the bird watchers on April 6. Pic/Yogesh Patel

The four owls of this rarely-seen species were spotted by Yogesh Arvind Patel, MSc (zoology) and Sandip Kachhap BSc (zoology). Both Patel and Kachhap are students of Bhavan’s College, Andheri and work as part-time naturalists at the Nature Information Centre (NIC) at SGNP.

Patel said, “We were on our regular birding trail when we spotted the four owls near Kanheri caves. These owls prefer rocky patches for nesting and roosting. We were lucky to spot them. There were two adults, which I believe was the breeding pair, and the other two were juveniles. It took us four hours to exact their location and photograph them. We were able to pinpoint their roosting location once the owls started descending.”

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