When it came to birds, the theme this year was - See birds when you least expect them!
|Changeable Hawk Eagle|
This was especially true during our visit to Mysore, when we saw birds everywhere we went. From a bunch of Munias happily twittering near the Palace, to a beautiful Changeable Hawk Eagle which perched on a tree ignoring us completely, and an Egyptian Vulture sitting on a rock by the roadside during the same trip. And then, on our visit to Gokarna, we stumbled upon a Flamingo, during the monsoon! I don't think aything stands out as vividly in our memory as that bird peacefully wading in the water near a field!
The highlight of course, was our visit to the Ranganathittu bird sanctuary, where we saw so many birds, it was impossible to keep track of what we saw! I have yet to write about that experience, so you can look forward to loads of bird pics in the coming weeks!
Meanwhile, closer home, my backyard birding seemed to have hit a low for a while, since a tree nearby was cut down. However, our winged friends surprised me nevertheless. Our usual Red Whiskered and Red Vented Bulbuls, Sunbirds, Coppersmith Barbets and Rose Ringed Parakeets are very much visible, but we also had new visitors this year - a pair of Fan tailed Flycatchers arrive at the same time everyday, as do a flock of Alexandrine Parakeets. Every now and then, a Long tailed Shrike visits us, as does a Black Drongo. Recently, we have also noticed a flock of Spotted Munias, which only gives me hope for the coming years!
|White Browed Fantail Flycatcher|
Meanwhile, this year, we also discovered a birding spot quite near our home - the Bhandup Pumping Station, and, though it is much frequent by bird photography enthusiasts, have enjoyed the sight of Garganey Ducks and Stilts, not to mention Terns and Gulls, plentifully and peacefully going about their work. In the coming years, we hope to go there more often, and enjoy some peaceful time with the birds, minus the photographers! Will I leave my camera behind? That, of course, remains to be seen!