Keoladeo National Park,Bharatpur, 250111

February 5, 2011

It’s such a relief to have the Photobucket links working again….so here’s how we started our trip to Bharatpur. On the 24th, thanks to theBangalore smog, our flight to Delhi took off an hour and a half late..which meant that by the time we drove from Delhi to Bharatpur, and checked in at the

Udai Vilas Palace Hotel

(excellent, and just 1km away from the bird sanctuary!)

it was too late to go birding; so we started off in good time on the 25th morning.

Here’s the sign at the entrance to the Keoladeo National Park:

brtpr sign 250111

The Park has always had very eco-friendly transportation, thanks to a limited area open to tourists, and a flat landscape: ecofrndly trnspt 250111 Cycles are also on hire, but it's better to hire the cycle-rickshaws, of which there are about 150 registered ones: Puran Singh's rickshaw 250111 Rickshaw-pullers (or pedallers, to be precise) like Puran Singh have been doing their job for years, and are excellent wildlife/bird spotters and guides. Here he is...doesn't he look venerable? He's fighting fit, with all that cycling every day! Puran Singh 250111 And here are some of the birds that we spotted, or observed, on the first day. I'll start with the very beautiful RED-THROATED FLYCATCHER: rd thrtd flcttchr 250111 a common bird in the area is the BLACK REDSTART: (this one's the male) blk rdstrt ml 250111 another old friend from south India, but which sat far more in the open than it does here, was the RUFOUS TREEPIE: rfs trpie 250111 Waterbirds were in plenty (though I don't know whether, before the Govermnment stopped the water supply to the Bharatpur Lake,and then restored it when the bird populations dwindled drastically... the populations were even more large) and included the COMMON MOORHEN: cmn mrhen 250111 the SPOONBILL: spnbl 250111 the BLACK-WINGED STILT: blk wngd stlt brtpr 250111 the GREYLAG GOOSE: greylg gse 250111 It was lovely to see many BAR-HEADED GEESE, and other waterbirds, too...the pics are on Facebook, click here (alas, it will work only if you are on Facebook!) We saw several raptors, including this GREATER SPOTTED EAGLE: gtr sptd egl 250111 Another bird of prey that we were lucky to spot, was this majestic DUSKY EAGLE OWL: dky egl owl 260111 That was a mother, and we soon saw her owlet, too, looking fearful and vulnerable: dsky egl owlet 250111

Let me end the first day’s sightings with the iconic bird of Bharatpur, the


Sarus crns brtpr 250111

These birds mate for life, and are held up as examples of faithfulness and undying true love!

Gaaaah, it takes forever to post on this tablet, so…next post later!