Monday, March 6, 2017

SpiderIndia Meet 2017 :: Kolkata, West Bengal

By Dr. Atul Vartak

The much awaited first SpiderIndia Meet was held in Kolkata, West Bengal from the 17th – 19th February 2017.

Stay was arranged in the Oasis Guest House in Jadavpur. Enthusiastic participants from different parts of the country started coming on from the 16th night and some arrived on 17th morning. About 20 enthusiasts from 6 States attended the meet.

On the first day 17th Feb all participants assembled at the Nature Mates office at Bijoygarh. Breakfast was followed by an introduction session by the participants. From there everyone was taken to ZSI (Zoological Survey of India) where we visited the Arachnology section first, spent time interacting with the PhD students and the staff. Also got to see a lot of specimens preserved from the British Indian Empire era. This was followed by a visit to different departments in ZSI and Lunch at the canteen. 

In the afternoon we proceeded for some fieldwork in the Botanical Gardens and the day concluded at the Nature Mates office where everyone made the days checklist.

The following two days, 18th and 19th were busy with a lot of fieldwork at 3 different sites. 18th Morning was spent in Central Park also known as the Banabitan followed by lunch on field. There after we proceeded to the Eco Park where participants had the paper presentation session. An online chat with Vijay Barve and Siddharth Kulkarni currently perusing PhD at the Washington University was very rewarding. A demonstration on Spider dissection was also organized at the same site.

19th morning participants were taken to the Chintamoni Kar Bird Sanctuary for fieldwork .The session concluded in the evening at the Nature Mates office where the participants were presented with participation certificates.

Approximately 12 Families 20  Genera were photo documented and a format for future documentation of spiders was discussed. A number of interesting spiders were photographed. Anepsion sp. , Ariamnes sp. Tylorida Sp. and many more!

Three days with spider enthusiasts… researchers... was a very satisfying with a lot of knowledge exchanged and new friends made. Overall a very good experience. A big thank you to the organizing team … Vijay Barve, Arjan Basu Roy and Team Nature Mates for successfully conducting this meet .

Looking forward for the next one.

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