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Ladakh - Planning The Trip

Over 2000 Km by road, in around 10 days. Stunning landscapes, wonderful people. That sums up our Ladakh trip. But how did it actually work? How did we make it happen? Read on to find out!  Leh, the capital of Ladakh , is accessible by air and road. Flying into Leh is the easiest, and time-saving option, while the road is the time consuming one, but with the added advantage of driving past some of the most beautiful landscapes in our country. Each option has much to recommend it, and we chose the road for just one reason – altitude sickness. Altitude sickness was one of my biggest concerns, since I suffer from motion-sickness. Yes, I do travel a lot, but that is despite my condition, and, over the years, have learnt how to handle it. I struggled with it when we visited Nathu-La in Sikkim, and wondered if I would be able to manage a week at the even higher altitudes that we would encounter in Ladakh. This was the reason we stuck to a basic plan, of only 9 days in Ladakh, though we

Chestnut Shouldered Petronia

A flock of birds pecking at something on the ground caught my attention. They looked like sparrows, so I turned my attention instead to a Little Green Bee Eater plucking out insects from the air. It was only when the tiny sparrow landed nearer me that I realised it wasn’t a sparrow – or at least, it wasn’t the common House Sparrow I see everywhere.



Out came the camera and I clicked furiously as the flock went about having their lunch.


It was Karthik who enlightened me about the identity of these birds – these are Yellow Throated Sparrows, also called Chestnut Shouldered Petronias. They are a species of sparrow found in Asia, from Turkey to Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Bangladesh. There are vagrants found in Sri Lanka and also Myanmar. Apparently, it’s quite a common bird, found in gardens, fields, and forests, and it made me wonder why I haven’t noticed any before.


Can you see the dark brownish or chestnut patch on the shoulder? That, and the pale yellow patch on its throat (which you can see if you look really close, unfortunately, I need a better camera to show you) give the bird its name.





Interestingly, this is the bird which is said to have introduced the legendary Salim Ali to Ornithology. As a young boy, he shot a sparrow that looked different, and the then secretary of the BNHS (Bombay Natural History Society) identified it for him, and also introduced him to the subject. His interest was sparked, and he went on to become probably the most well-known ornithologist of the country. Isn’t it interesting to see how simple things like these change the course of a person’s life? 

Comments

  1. I guess I have never seen it before! Looks pretty.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. next time you see a sparrow, take a closer look, Mridula! you never know!

      Delete
  2. As you love travelling, here is a website www.mygreatstay.com which is a travel portal listing homestays across India. It is a very good guide to mostly unexplored locations in India.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, but I already know about you guys. have even booked homestays a couple of times.

      Delete
  3. Hello mam, It sounds very good when I visited your great blog and felt nice even I read your entire blog like photograph collection super means It was awesome overall... Thanks for share

    ReplyDelete

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