Shivanahalli, Camp Gee Dee,Bannerghatta Forest Area, 261210

December 27, 2010

I was going to strictly stay at home, and do my packing and preparation for the trip to BR Hills tomorrow. So naturally, when Gopakumar called and asked if I would come with (alphabetical order) , and Peeyush, of course I immediately said yes! I'd been wanting to meet Gopa for a long time, and he'd told me that his daughter Madhumita had come with us to BR Hills (the Valley School trip.) So...ditch the pending work, and off I go! Any invitation to Bannerghatta forest...unthinkable to turn it down, especially with such company!

As usual, the day started with fog and mist…here is, I am not kidding…the sun!


Everyone appeared grey.... sheet rcck 261210 But the sun did break through, and out came our binoculars! binocs 261210 It was lovely to see the early light on the dewdrops, on the cactus: dew on cactus sheet rock 261210 Here are the others, on the rocks of Ragidevara Betta: tower rock 261210 Here's Vishnu, who gave us access to Camp Gee Dee, so that we could climb the betta (hillock) vishnu 261210 On the way back, we spotted two lovely sights: one, this vendor of shiny brass and bronze vessels: bronze and copper 261210 and the beautiful way in which the walls of this house have been built, the traditional way, with stacked-up stone: wall 261210 The tradition dates back several thousand years, when these dolmens were built up on the rock face: the bodies were set upon the rock face, and the top slab, held on load bearing granite pieces, was built up in a similar fashion, to form a burial site: dolmen 261210 On the timeless (the rocks, called Peninsular Gneiss, are among the oldest exposed rock in the world) surface, the PENINSULAR ROCK AGAMAS bask in the sunshine: agama 261210 gd Another reptile we spotted was the CHAMELEON: chameleon 261210 We saw an ants' nest on the way up: ants' nest 261210 Butterflies included this (not sure) PLUM JUDY (correct my id if it's wrong) plum judy? this BUSH BROWN (again, not sure) bush brown 261210 the BARONET baronet 261210 and this LEMON PANSY: lemon pansy 261210 Tiny insects included these MEALY BUGS: mealy bug 261210 gd this un id BEETLE: un id beetle gd 261210 and this beautiful SPIDER WASP: spider wasp 261210 We looked at several interesting trees, ranging from the Indian Laburnum, to the tree from the wood of which the Chennapatna toys are made. (Gopa, I want the scientific name of it once again!) This un id wildflower looked beautiful in the sunlight: wldflower 261210 We found the winged seeds of the Holarrhena antidysenterica tree: anti dys 261210 I didn't photograph too many birds, but this KESTREL was a great sighting, first soaring above us, and then sitting on a far-off tree, eating its prey: kestrel 261210 this backlit PIED BUSHCHAT actually started us off! bushchat 261210 gd Another lovely sighting was this BLACK DRONGO in its iridiscent black's sitting on top of a cow (the full photo is in the Picasa album, link below.) blk drngo 261210 Here are the bird and other lists: Babbler, Jungle Barbet, Coppersmith Barbet, Small Green Bee-eater, Small Green Bulbul,Red-vented Bulbul, Red-whiskered Bushchat, Pied Buzzard, Oriental Honey Crow, House Crow, Jungle Dove, Laughing Dove, Spotted Egret, Cattle Flowerpecker, Tickell's Kestrel Kingfisher, White-breasted Kite, Black Kite, Brahminy Koel, Asian Leafbird, (not clear) Malkoha, Blue-faced Mynah, Common Mynah, Jungle Owlet, Spotted Parakeet, Plum-headed Parakeet, Rose-ringed Prinia, Ashy Robin, Indian Robin, Oriental Magpie Shikra Shrike, Brown Shrike, Long-tailed Sunbird, Purple-rumped Treepie, Rufous Un id Raptor Butterflies: Blues, Various Bushbrown, Common Crow, Common Jezebel, Common Judy, Plum Leopard, Common Pansy,Chocolate Pansy,Lemon Psyche Rose, Common Rose,Crimson Sailor, Common Tiger, Common Tiger, Glassy Wanderer, Common Yellow, Grass, various Insects Beetles, Crickets, Dragonflies, Grasshoppers, Spiders Mammals: Macaque, Bonnet

For more pics, click here

I’m sure the others will produce even better pics, just wait for the links! A wonderful morning…. I came home only by 1pm! Gopa’s breakfast offering of two loaves of bread and cheese spread was wolfed down, but we then called him a “double loafer”. Vishnu hospitably offered us welcome cups of chai and fruit juice and a nice chat, too.

Having never really caught up with the work afterwards, and having to go out the entire evening….I am, of course, sitting and making this post instead of packing my bag for BR Hills tomorrow!

Oooh, I love Bannerghatta forests….