The last day of the year, 2011

December 31, 2011

Is there anything special about the last day or the first day of the year? We ourselves calculate two different years, the Anno Domini and the Tamizh year…and I know several more….Parsi, Hindi, Bengali, and so on…I personally feel that it would be logical to begin the year in springtime, not in mid-winter…but a procession of Roman emperors saw to it that whether or not people have a white Christmas, in many parts of the world, they will have a white New Year.

Oh well..on the last day of 2011, we didn’t want to let go of our regular trail, even though the cyclonic weather further in Pondicherry (sorry, Puthucheri) cast a cloudy pall on our own weather. Bundling up warmly, Chandu, Santosh, Vaibhav and I went to my favourite zoo area in the Bannerghatta National Park. This is probably the one forest in India, apart from Gir, where one can hear the lions roar as one wanders around! It’s a different matter that the lions are in captivity in the Zoo….but the noise is rather chilling to newcomers, and thrilling to children!

One of the highlights was seeing this



Here are some of the other sights... It was nice to observe that the windmill in the zoo area was going nicely...good to see a clean, sustainable energy source! wndml bgz 311211 These weeds in the quarry pond looked beautiful: pnd wd birds  bgz Here are the others: sntsh chndu vbhv birds  bgz Having bricked up the opening, JLR have not removed the board pointing to their Hillview Restaurant, resulting in a funny sign: signbd jlr birds  bgz The birds we saw: ROSY PASTOR rsy pstr birds  bgz COMMON HAWK CUCKOO (from a distance, we kept having doubts about this bird's id, confusing it with a Shikra, especially seeing the way it flew, hunting. Now I now why it's called a "hawk" cuckoo.) hwk ccko birds  bgz BOOTED WARBLER: btd wrbler birds  bgz SMALL GREEN BEE-EATER; grn b etr birds  bgz INDIAN BUSHLARK: indn bshlrm birds  bgz PURPLE-RUMPED SUNBIRD: pr snbd birds  bgz RED-WHISKERED BULBUL: rd whskrd blbl birds  bgz SCALY-BREASTED MUNIA: scly brstd mna side birds  bgz BLACK-NAPED ORIOLE: Photobucket a Black-naped Oriole Motorcycle: Photobucket PIED KINGFISHER: pkf rt look bgz 311211 ASHY DRONGO: Photobucket PURPLE SUNBIRD (scratching itself busily!) ppl sunbd scrtching bgz 311211 SMALL BLUE KINGFISHER: sbkf bgz 311211 POND HERON: pnd hrn bgz 311211 The mammals we saw included three mongoose, crossing our path rapidly, a black-naped hare, some Chital that we spotted by peeping over the zoo wall, and this GAUR: gaur shtng bgz 311211 (Yes, it was going to, and it did.) The bird list actually was: Babbler, Jungle Barbet, Coppersmith Barbet, White-cheeked Bee-eater, Small Green Bulbul, Red-vented Bulbul, Red-whiskered Bushchat, Pied Bushlark, Indian Bushlark, Jerdon's Cormorant, Little Crow, Jungle Crow, House Dove, Laughing Dove, Spotted Drongo, Ashy Drongo, Black Drongo, White-bellied Egret, Cattle Egret, Little Flowerpecker, Pale-billed Flycatcher, Asian Paradise Flycatcher, Tickell's Blue Flycatcher, White-browed Fantail Francolin, Grey Heron, Pond Hoopoe, Common Iora, Common Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, Small Blue Kingfisher, White-breasted Kite, Brahminy Kite, Common Lapwing, Red-watled Munia, Scaly-breasted Myna, Common Myna, Jungle Oriole, Black-naped Parakeet, Rose-ringed Pigeon, Blue Rock Pipit, Paddyfield Prinia, Ashy Prinia, Plain Robin, Indian Roller, Indian Shikra Shrike, Bay-backed Shrike, Brown Shrike, Long-tailed Silverbills, Indian Sparrow, House Starling, Rosy Sunbird, Purple-rumped Swallow, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Wire-tailed Tailorbird, Common Treepie, Rufous Wagtail, Pied Warbler, Blyth's Reed Warbler, Booted Warbler, Greenish Leaf And the mammals list was Chital Gaur, Indian Hare, Black-naped Mongoose, Common We did not sight any crocodiles today...not sunny enough for them to bask on the rocks!

I leave you with the sacred markings of this little shrine under a huge banyan tree….wish you all the best for the years ahead!

namam birds  bgz

All pics with the MLC…