Know your Mangroves

The mangrove forest has a mangrove.
The mangrove has a branch.
The branch has a bird
The bird with a little fish in the beak.
A man passed with a machine.
Who knows why he passed!
He has taken the mangrove forest
With its mangrove and its branch
With its branch and its bird.
With its bird with the little fish in its beak.

Mangroves of Thane creek provide food and shelter for over 200 varieties of birds throughout the year. The glorious Flamingo (called as ‘Agnipankhi’ due to flame pink coloured wings) is probably the most appreciated species today. It gets its pink colour from the ‘algae’, minute creatures it feeds upon. The algae, in turn, depend on the organic particles produced by mangroves and other living creatures. Any disturbance to mangroves and marine creatures would unbalance this delicate ecosystem maintained by nature after evolution of millions of years. Today, the migratory flamingos face threats due to urbanization all around.

Laxmikant Deshpande