*This is in no way to encourage you to travel during this Corona pandemic.
*These are just my views on a place I visited before the lockdown.
Goa is not just a state but it’s a feeling filled with all kinds of emotions and variety of every kind.
Just when you have visited the famous churches of Old Goa and thinking about returning back, wait a while, take an hour or so and visit this peace heaven nearby.
I’m talking about Lake Carambolim. If you travel around 4 Kms from Old Goa, you will come across the village of Carambolim or Karmali. Carambolim is situated approximately 12 kms from the state capital of Panaji and a trip here can be planned out when you are out exploring the surrounding areas.
Once you have entered the serene and quieter side of the village of Carambolim, signboards and road posts will lead your way to an even nicer part of the village and to the key attraction-the Lake. The Carambolim Lake is a massive man made water body and is of great ecological and historical importance as well. It’s a manmade lake whose construction dates back to the Kadamba civilization. It was initially built for agricultural and piscicultural activities and is still used for irrigation of the nearby fields.
The massive lake is a heaven for bird watchers. On the first view one can see this lake looks beautiful- clean, green and flocked by a number of birds swinging around and enjoying the wide open space to swoop over the water. Carambolim Lake is considered not just Goa’s, but one of India’s best birdwatching sites. This is definitely a place every bird lover dreams of.
This lake attracts a large variety of avi-fauna. This place sees around 126 kinds of resident species and up to 107 kind of migratory ones.
One can spot the resident and permanent birds like Spot Billed Duck, Grey headed Swamphen, Plumheaded Parakeet, Pied Kingfisher, White Browed Bulbul,Darter, Cotton Pygmy Goose, Malabar Grey Hornbill, Lesser Whistling Teal, Jungle Owletho, Brahminy Kite.
Migratory birds like Northern Pintail, Eurasian Wigeon, Garganey, Painted Stork, Ruff, Kentish Plover, Eurasian Marsh Harrier, Greater Spotted Eagle, Greater Flamingo, Great White Pelican and many more are also spotted during the seasons.
You get to see a huge variety of birds around and it’s always fun to guess how many you could spot. The light forest cover around the lake too supports a lot of fauna. The lake also supports a small population of Marsh crocodiles and large number of flap shell turtles can also be seen there.
The best time to visit is from November to March when most of the migratory birds make a stop here. The place remains quiet peaceful and undisturbed and not crowded at all-all essentials for a good bird watching activity.
The government has taken great initiatives towards felicitating bird watching here by putting bird watching towers around. There are information boards put up with the needed information of birds which are of great help. But still some more initiatives are needed to be taken to conserve and maintain the ecology of the place.
Respecting and maintaining the ecology and serenity of the place is important and not littering here should be every person’s personal responsibility. One can enjoy a pleasant bird watching experience in this peace heaven.
*THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO!
-Best time to visit: November to March.
-Carry-Binoculars, water, snacks, your camera, a book to keep note of the birds you have spotted…And of course a lot of patience.
-There is no transport facility to the spot, so you will have to arrange for your own transport.