See thousands of fireflies glowing in the forests of Maharashtra

See thousands of fireflies glowing in the forests of Maharashtra
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“Sitting in the woods in the dead of night and watching thousands of fireflies glowing in unison feels like the stars have descended on the earth. They seem to light up the forest from one end to the other in a magical pattern,” says Digvijay Rathore, a senior trek leader with Mischief Treks, Mumbai, who has been leading groups of people on firefly trails, festivals and camps in the past. six years.

firefly season

This is the season of fireflies. Beginning in the second week of May, when summer is about to transition into the rainy season, spurts of summer rain are common. This is followed by a short pause before the rains fall. This is also a period when fireflies come out to mate, decorating the forests like garlands of fairy lights. The phenomenon usually occurs along the Western Ghats, and the mating timing of the fireflies is based on the climatic conditions of these regions.

Also read: Synchronous illumination by mega-congregation of fireflies recorded in another forest range of the Anamalai Tiger Reserve

“There is only a small window of, say, 15 days when firefly mating takes place. It usually happens when there is some humidity in the air, just before the start of the monsoon,” adds Digvijay.

Travel and adventure companies in and around Mumbai have been offering selected firefly festivals, camping and treks in Bhandardara, Rajmachi, Igatpuri, Lonavala, Karjat, Prabalmachi, Purushwadi and Kothaligad regions of Maharashtra district where you can observe this congregation of blinking fireflies.

What usually starts in May, can last until the first week of June in Maharashtra. “The breeding season starts before the monsoon. In Coorg, it’s during the first and second week of April and then they travel north to Maharashtra,” says Obuli Chandran, science communicator and founder of Mango Education, an alternative fundamental and applied science school for children. In April he hadtook a group of children to witness the fireflies at Madikeri in Coorg. “We were at the Rainforest Retreat in Madikkeri, on an organic plantation and we saw swarms of fireflies flashing, the children were delighted. They had never seen anything like this before,” she adds.

Near the Sahyadri

Mumbai, being close to the Sahyadri range, has rolling hills and forests just a couple of hours from the city, and watching the fireflies has become a coveted experience, says Vinay Gupta of Adventure Geek, a trekking group that also runs tours. backpackers and specialists. packages like the mango festival. This season, most inquiries are about firefly trails, Vinay says.

With the number of visitors increasing over the years, great care is taken not to disturb the insects, says Digvijay. “We tell campers that the focus is on the fireflies and not ‘camping.’ For those who come expecting campfires and barbecues, we teach how fireflies are extremely sensitive to small changes in the environment. Fire, smoke, and lights can contaminate your surroundings and cause harm,” he explains.

While the camps in the initial years have been receiving people from Mumbai and the surrounding area, in recent years they have seen people from other parts of India, including Bangalore and Hyderabad.

“Sometimes a single tree in the forest can have 15,000 to 20,000 fireflies, and if you’re camping, you might find some of them glowing inside your tent as well,” Digvijay concludes.

Firefly treks and camps are available until June 17 and range from ₹499 to ₹1,699 per person. Tickets at,

A preview of the most important events and festivals in the country before they happen. So do you want to travel more? Watch this space.


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