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Ritesh Nangare, from Pune is a Director for a Software company by profession and an excellent wildlife and nature photographer by passion. His love for nature and wildlife is heart whelming, especially his love for Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher. Every image of his will let you forget the time when your eyes blinked last and fills them with joy and happiness.

He is here to share his expertise and experience with us.


When did you start photography and how did you begin your journey in this field?
I started my Photography in 2010. My First DSLR was a Panasonic, which was gifted to me by a mobile company. In a month’s time, I realised that I had to change my DSLR to CANON or Nikon. So, I bought Nikon D7100 with Sigma 150-500mm and Nikon 80-200 ED.

What is your area of specialization? What inspired you to it?
My specialization is ODKF (Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher) bird. Previously I was very keen to have images of APFC. I love birds and love their colors and the variety of shades they have. I got inspired by the colours of ODKF and the hard work that both the mother and father do to raise their chicks during the breeding season.

I love Tigers also. TADOBA is my second home. I have been going to Tadoba from 2011 and had first seen the Golden Era of Tadoba, which was in 2011 and 2012; I had made eleven visits in those two years.

Can you share with your adventurous moments in the field?
We were at Teliya area of Tadoba. This was a morning safari. We got news that a Teliya Cub was seen in morning at the lake ….. We rushed to the lake and got settled there. That was at 7.30 am. I guess we waited for a long time and tired of the wait, I slept on the back seat of the vehicle. It was 10 a.m. and we were still waiting to see the cubs get out after the heat rises in the area. We heard the Sambar calls from the left side of the lake….. So we got alert now and very keenly searched for the tiger. Our jeep driver screamed “Pillay, Pillay, cubs- cubs, in Marathi. All the four cubs were hiding in the long dry grass just 10 to 15 ‘from us and we had not noticed them. We started shooting them. Then we heard the calling of the tiger. By the voice, it appeared like a male tiger, as told by our guide, Nilkanth. While we were busy shooting the four cubs, our guide, Nilkanth said that the tiger was a Waghdoh male, the dominating male tiger of Teliya and father of the cubs, was looking at us from above. We parked our jeep in shade in a little ditch and he was over that ditch above us. Here I got a chill down my spine and my hands got frozen. Here, one of the biggest tigers, stood just 10 feet above our head and on the other side four cubs. We stopped shooting because both of them were too close to shoot. I was using 1Dx with 500mm +1.4 Tc. The DOF was 12 to 15 feet and I was not able to focus on both of them and they were coming closer and closer to us. So we stopped all movements in the jeep and asked the driver to start the jeep. We moved a little forward and then Waghdoh came down to meet his cubs and they all disappeared into the Back waters of Teliya. I regret that though I had this beautiful sight, I could not shoot the images. I have a few images while he stood on that ditch and seeing a tiger from that close was itself an award to me.

We have seen some of your amazing wildlife and nature images. Which one is your most favorite image and what are your feelings associated with that image.
I am following the ODKF since the last five years. Some of the best sightings in bird photography are from ODKF only. I have one set of images where I shot only the back side of ODKF because of its vibrant colours and I personally love that image.

What are your future goals and aspirations?
I live in Pune. It is almost in Western Ghats. We have very rich habitat and shrubland near Pune. We have Tamhini Ghats, which is a world heritage site and just 60 km from Pune, we can find hundreds of species of birds, animals, amphibians and reptiles. I want to cover most of it, which is near Pune first and after that I will move on to other places.

I have a goal to shoot all the male famous tigers in Tadoba, which is incomplete till date. I am missing two of them and hope to find them soon.

What is your advice to the upcoming photographers/amateurs?
I myself, feel a very small part of the photography community and I am too new to advise someone as I am still in the learning stage and hope to grasp more knowledge in the coming years. Still everyone can do their bit to protect the nature.

Special Thanks to Mr. Ritesh Nangare for sharing his experiences.

With Love & Passion

Smile Art Beats
Beats of Artistic Hearts. A Magazine from Dinesh Dinu & SMILE ART Creations team, which recognizes the hidden talents in the field of Arts & Photography.