Bharatpur-November 2018 trip Day-3…
The last day we spent in Bharatpur was a wonderful one. Today, for us, the day started well before it did for everyone else around. We woke up at 6, took a bath (after 2 days), got ready to go and this is how we got ready for another marvelous adventure. This was the last day of our trip and we went into the Park just to go boating as except my father nobody had done it before here in the Park. Like always the rickshaw person was there on time but this time we didn’t go with him. Instead, we packed and took off in our own car because we had planned that after returning from the Park we will not go to the guest house but directly go home.
(A stone board near the Park’s main entrance)
Like yesterday, we entered the Park, bought tickets went inside but this time the priority was boating not birding.
Missing every bird and animal in our way, we hurried towards the boating area but when we reached there, we heard a bad news that there were many people there in waiting and our turn will come after about an hour. It is right that we were disappointed but we didn’t care and moved on.
Now, the first treasure was a Eurasian Wryneck (Jynx torquilla).
That one didn’t stay for long but gave us some good shots. We went into thorny bushes in search of it but in vain. We only saw some Common Babblers (Turdoides caudata) in there but they too were in a hurry and didn’t give us any chance of even a single photograph.
We moved further and reached the Sunset Point and waited there for something to happen and it happened! A White Breasted Kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis) came flying and sat on a branch very close to us. The closeness cannot be explained through words. The bird was so close that we had to go a bit back so that our cameras could focus on the bird. The interesting thing was that it had a fish in its bill.
(White breasted Kingfisher with its prey)
This photograph up here was the best one we clicked on this trip. When the bird flew away, a call came telling us to reach the Boating Area immediately as the person was waiting there for us. We hurried up and before we could start we saw a Crested Serpent Eagle (Spilornis cheela). We hurriedly clicked 5-7 photographs of it and went back.
(This one was not a fully-grown adult but was almost mature)
In about 10 minutes we reached the Boating Area, went into the boat and in minutes we were in the water in a boat.
For a long time, there were no birds to be seen when suddenly an Indian Silverbill (Eurodice malabarica) came flying and sat on an aquatic plant very near to us. We clicked photographs of it and not Just photographs, we clicked great photographs of it.
When the bird left we spotted an Intermediate Egret (Ardea intermedia).
The next thing we saw was just amazing. A Yellow-Crowned Woodpecker (Leiopicus mahrattensis). He really made us mad because it didn’t stay on the same tree for long and kept shifting its place and us catching it in a boat was stupid but we were determined to get a great photograph of it. After half an hour of hard work, we accomplished our mission.
The area where we did boating was the same where we came the previous day on foot but the difference was that at that time we were on land and this time we were in adjoining waters. We stopped near the path to get off the boat and try our luck and see if we could see some Great White Pelicans (Pelecanus onocrotalus) but in vain. We didn’t get any Pelicans but still, we stood there taking photographs of comparatively less interesting birds like the Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata) etc. There was a person sitting on the ground taking photographs of Eurasian Spoonbills (Platalea leucorodia) feeding. Suddenly he started shouting “Flamingos-Flamingos”, his camera still pointed towards the Spoonbills. We all were surprised because nobody could see them coming except him. I thought that he was a noob and was calling Spoonbills Flamingos but, the next moment there came a group of 5 Greater Flamingos towards us. I misjudged that man (😮). We were not able to see them because there were tall bushes in the way and he was sitting in an open space.
(Eurasian Spoonbills feeding)
(We didn’t get a good shot of them because we were late but they were also not bad)
When the Flamingos were gone, we also decided to go back and we went into the boat and were ready to go back. This time we didn’t see anything at all except a Jungle Crow (Corvus macrorhynchos) and a Eurasian Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus), none of them worth stopping.
It was time to go home now. We stopped where the Lemongrass Nature Trail begins to try for a Spotted Owlet (Athene brama). The last photograph we clicked was of an Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus) – An adult with an Immature.
(Spotted Owlet Juvenile in hole)
(An Immature and an Adult Egyptian Vulture)
(A White-Breasted Kingfisher we clicked on the way)
Next, we went back to the main gate, paid the guides for their hard work, and wished goodbye to them as well as the Park and the City.
Our last stop was at Mathura Brijwasi Restaurant where we had a delicious and fulfilling breakfast (actually it was both, lunch and breakfast) and then we stopped nowhere before Ludhiana. We reached Ludhiana at about 7:45 pm. We wished goodbye to the Adv. Ravi Sharma and is his son Adv. Abhishek Sharma, the duo we caught up with day before yesterday, and went back to Phillaur. This is how the day and the trip ended with a Happy Ending.
(All four of us near the Park’s main entrance)
This trip, we realized that there were less number of ducks in the Park. This was because this year there was a lot of Water Hyacinth. It should have been removed during the Summers when the water and the number of waterfowl is very less. But it was being done now, when it is the peak time for the migratory birds to arrive. This was a major reason for the number of ducks and geese reduced this year. I strongly hope that we don’t get to see this the next time we go there.