lots of birding...
Talk about Ms Murphy. When we got up at 5.30 am, ready to drive the 25km to the Binsar Bird Sanctuary, which also has a view point for the Himalayan peaks…it was pouring with rain and actual hail. So we made another try at 10 am and went there and took the help of a wildlife guide in the sanctuary…who told us that due to the heavy rain, the birds had gone from the tall trees to the smaller ones lower down in the valley…near our resort, in fact!
We did manage to see some chestnut-bellied nuthatches, a blackbird, a verditer flycatcher, a black eagle, a Eurasian jay (that’s what the guide said, but I can’t find such a bird in my Salim Ali) and great Himalayan barbet. Several drongos were around too. I am preparing a list of all the birds we saw and will post a nice report to bngbirds later….
The guide also showed us plants such as Manjishta, wild turmeric, wild geranium, isabgol, and indigo plants. Amazingly, each flower on the indigo plants had some black and red shiny-backed insects sitting on them…and there were several lady birds on the bushes too. I am struggling to make sense of his pronouciation, so the names may not be correct…there was a plant called chinnapodum which is used against the silverfish that attack books.
I saw some seedlings germinating on the leaves of a small bush, but the guide could not tell me about it..I need some info about it.
But the Mahindra Binsar resort has a variety of birds. The most decorative looking is the yellow-billed blue magpie,with its long,black and white tail…4 or 5 of these keep hopping around the conifers right in front of our room. Then there are the black bulbuls and the white-cheeked bulbuls; the grey tits, and of course the red-rumped swallows. Then there are the babblers and we have seen some sunbirds too. Then there are the hoopoes and the hill mynas too, and a shama.
Mohan goes around with his lunar-module lens and has been very active, and I will take either
The heavy rain is really playing spoilsport, but we are managing to do a lot of birding, and otherwise enjoying ourselves! The Mahindra resort here is NOT half as good as the Munnar resort,I must say.
We have a huge 13 hour drive day after tomorrow to Munsiryari. The internet at the resort is very erratic…didn’t work at all yesterday and I was hanging around the activity centre (the main resort is about 3km of hilly road away from where we are staying) and luckily it came one, so I have hogged the Internet right now!
We have also taken some snaps of birds which we need ids for….I will need a lot of help from more experienced people once I get back!
Got to do my email as well now…so that’s it for now from deponti-in-Binsar! I don’t know what kind of internet access I will have in Munsiyari or Corbett if this place, which is supposed to be a plush resort,is so erratic! The phones were down for 24 hours due to the rain yesterday….