Tuesday, December 29, 2009

From My Christmas Road Trip...

These pics are from my christmas-time roadtrip which I had to abort midway because my granny fell ill.
The first stop was Jogi Matti in Chitradurga.
67. Paddyfield Warbler (Acrocephalus agricola)

68. Wire-tailed Swallow (Hirundo smithii)
Day 2 of my trip included a visit to Mandagadde Bird Sanctuary near Shimoga. Unfortunately I could only spot a couple of kingfishers and hill mynas all of whom were out of range for my camera. However, on the way back from there we stopped over at my nephew's school and we found this Wire-tailed Swallow taking a break from its psychedelic air show. I had to make an exception to my rule to include this one in this blog, because I am resigned about ever getting the chance to photograph a swallow sitting on anything but an electric wire.

From France 2012

69. Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus) : Another of the easy coupons encashed!
Original picture replaced by this one I shot in Gulakmale
And here's the beauty in flight...

70. Rufous-winged Bush Lark (Mirafra assamica) or could be the Jerdon's too
This was spotted in Shimoga town.

71. Yellow Billed Babbler (Turdoides affinis): This was taken right in front of my uncle's house in my home town, Amruthapura.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


63. Striped Tit Babbler (Macronous gularis)

64. Small Minivet (Pericrocotus cinnamomeus)

65. Greater Coucal (Centropus sinensisReplaced by a picture I clicked in Amruthapura

66. Yet to be IDed. Seems like some kind of Nuthatch.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Black Headed Munia

61. Female Black-headed Munia (Lonchura atricapilla)

Had the most beautiful experience with this Munia. She was about 20 ft away from me when I started photographing her. After every shot I moved a foot closer. She would stop each time I took a step, gauge the threat for a couple of seconds and resume feeding on the grass. In about half an hour she was completely habituated to me and she let me get as close as 6 feet, from which distance I got this snap.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Shivanahalli is a small village adjacent to the boundary of Bannerughatta National Park. These two pictures were taken on a trail organized by bngbirds, which is a very active birding group in Bangalore. The haul from this trip would have been great if I hadn't reached there with an unloaded weapon. I forgot to charge the batteries of my camera last night!

59. Tickell's Blue Flycatcher (Cyornis tickelliae)
Original Picture
Update on 15-Nov! I got a better pic near Ayyanakere near Chikmagalur

60. Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer)
Replaced the original with a photo taken in Bharatpur

Monday, October 5, 2009


These photographs were taken during a mere four hours spent at the park. I can't wait to spend a couple of days there.

As always let me begin with my favorites.

37. Spotted Owlet (Athene brama)
I hate anthropomorphism, not least because it has given us a string of bad hollywood movies, but yet I couldn't resist attrbuting human expressions to this particularly beautiful creature. It seemed to say "Hey, you look like a harmless nerd, but you are getting a little too close".

A better shot taken in Amruthapura

38. Indian roller (Coracias benghalensis)
Don't ask me why but Karnataka has a state bird, the Indian Roller! My father had pasted a beautiful poster of this bird in our dining room. I had no idea why he did that because he wasn't much of a bird watcher himself. This has to be one of the most gorgeous birds in flight.

(Update: Replaced by a picture taken in Kanha)

39. Indian Grey Hornbill (Ocyceros birostris)
This one is probably a juvenile.

40.Eurasian Golden Oriole (Oriolus oriolus)

41. Black-rumped Flameback (Dinopium benghalense)

(Replaced by a picture shot in Pench)

42. Brown-headed Barbet or Large Green Barbet (Megalaima zeylanica)
This reminded me of the barbet family that nested outside my window for years. If I had started this project a decade ago I could have photographed the whole family from six feet away.

43. Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus)
The name of this bird is misleading; the neck is not black but some really exotic colour.

44. Woolly-necked Stork (Ciconia episcopus)

45. Black Drongo (Dicrurus macrocercus)
Updated by picture taken in KokkarebeLLur on 06-Feb.
Original picture here.

46. White-throated Kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis)
Update! Replaced the original picture with this one taken near Gajanur in Shimoga district

47. Great Egret (Ardea alba)

48. Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea)

49. Intermediate Egret or Median, or Yellow-billed, Egret, (Ardea intermedia)

50. Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea)
(Replaced by a picture taken in Bharatpur in 2015)

51. Indian Peafowl (Pavo cristatus)

52. Jungle Babbler (Turdoides striata)
(Replaced by a photo taken in Bharatpur in 2015)

53. Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto)
Replaced by a photo I took in Zainabad, Gujarat

54. Blue-tailed Bee-eater (Merops philippinus)

55. White-breasted Waterhen (Amaurornis phoenicurus)

56. Black-winged Stilt (Himantopus himantopus)

I'm not sure about the next one...
57. Long-toed Stint (Erolia subminuta)

58. Common Myna or Indian Myna (Acridotheres tristis)
This one is a plain number pusher!

All the others are repeats because I thought the photos here are much better than the ones before.

23. Red-wattled Lapwing (Vanellus indicus)

34. Rufous Treepie (Dendrocitta vagabunda)

36. Rose-ringed Parakeet (Psittacula krameri),

Saturday, September 26, 2009


The Gandhi Krishi Vignana Kendra campus of the University of Agricultural Sciences is a real heaven for bird-watching. I got all of the following in less than an hour. It was overcast when I reached there and the sun was setting. As a result, these snaps aren't so great. But I promised myself to go there again, preferably in the morning, very soon.

32. Shikra (Accipter badius)
This one just refused to come out of the dark foliage. She perched on this distant branch just long enough for me to click this snap.

33. Oriental Magpie Robin (Copsychus saularis)
This is a common resident and rather bold too. I am confident I'll replace this with a better snap.
Update on 4-May-2012: Replaced with a pic taken in Galibore.

34. Rufous Treepie (Dendrocitta vagabunda)
This raucus pair was silhouetted against the evening light. I wasn't quick enough to change the settings of the camera to get a better shot.

(Replaced by a pic taken in Bharatpur)

The next two are very common birds and really deserve better photographs, but I'm feeling desperate to move my numbers a little.
35. Male Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopacea)

36. Male Rose-ringed Parakeet (Psittacula krameri)

Monday, September 14, 2009


Anejhari is a forest lodge near Kollur in Shimoga district and fast becoming one of my favorite places in the world. More about the trip on my other blog. Here are the birds I spotted and photographed.

First the ones I'm proud of.
21. Malabar/Southern Trogon (Harpactes fasciatus)
This beauty teased and tormented. It kept changing its perch before I could train my lens on it. The dark foliage made it really difficult to take a good shot without blurring the picture. Before I got this shot I was out of breath and had 2 long thorns embedded in my calf muscle.

22.Crested Serpent Eagle (Spilornis cheela)
Spotted this one while driving near Sagar. Had to run hundreds of meters through paddy fields to get close to this guy. The picture is blurred but the beast is magnificient.
(Replaced by a picture from Bandhavgarh)

The next bunch of low-resolution pictures of waders and friends came from two gorgeous lotus ponds on the way back from Anejhari.

23. Red-wattled Lapwing (Vanellus indicus)
I'm not exactly proud of this pic. I'm determined to replace it with a better one.

24. Purple Swamphen (Poryphyrio poryphyrio)
(Replaced by a picture taken in Bharatpur in 2015)

25. Little Egret (Egretta garzetta)

26. Lesser Whistling Duck (Dendrocygna javanica)
Replaced on 12-Jan by a pic I shot in Sri Lanka

Check out the hatchlings barely visible in the grass.

27. Cotton Pygmy Goose (Nettapus coromandelianus)

28. Little Cormorant (Phalacrocorax niger)

29. Common Coot (Fulica atra)
(Replaced by a picture taken in Bharatpur in 2015)

30. Bronze Winged Jacana (Metopedius indicus)
This long-clawed male was boucing around from one lotus leaf to the other. I had to click nearly 50 times to get this half-decent snap.

...and finally
31. Spotted Dove (Streptopilia chinensis)
I'm using up yet another "joker card" here, but the temptation to keep the counter ticking is too strong.