Saturday, September 8, 2012

Mohan Chatti and Rishikesh

Drove my Alto LXi to Rishikesh on 5th September 2012. Straight to Mohan Chatti driving along the Chilla canal in Rajaji National Park. River Ganga was full, though water was muddy due to rains... Spent the whole evening at Mohan Chatti upto Bijni village.. Night stay at Hotel Rajdeep, Ram Jhoola..

While driving back from Mohan Chatti on 5th Sep night, mild rains.. we saw a cat very briefly that looked like a Marbled Cat... very handsome..

Next day, we drove to Mohan Chatti again .. it is a beautiful valley .. with Nhol river flowing below.. dense forest... my favourite place..

Returned on 7th September 2012. Jagat Varma was with me... Here are some of the pix I took..

At Garud Chatti, I met a lady who served us tea .. she runs her makeshift restaurant along the river Ganga.. her long hair and peaceful aura ... attracted my attention... She posed for some good pix.. i made .. though it was cloudy, no sunlight.... yet some pix are here.. She told me that she had widowed when she was just 20 .. with sadness in her eyes... took take of her two kids.. now grown up... I appreciated her wonderful courage to lead a healthy life.

The lady at Garud Chatti..

 Her hair... wonderful
 Red-vented Bulbuls
 River Nhol
 River Nhol..
 River Ganga near Ram Jhoola
 Looking at the sunset near Ved Niketan, Rishikesh
Meditation at the river Ganga..

 wild flower..
 Glory lily growing wild..
 Rain puddle turning into a swimming pool for the house sparrows..

The little car. but wonderful... with Jagat inside..
 Rufous Turtle Dove
 Streaked Laughingthrush
Spotted Dove..
 Me ..

 A swamiji walking..
Rice field..

Monday, August 27, 2012

A new wetland at Dighal, Rohtak on 25th August 2012

Dighal Wetland, Rohtak, Haryana on 25th August 2012

After getting phone calls from Rakesh about two new species of birds for the state of Haryana, Ruddy Turnstone and Whimbrel from his village wetland, I drove on a cloudy Saturday morning. Intermittent rains.  Smiling at the  happily preening Peacocks perched atop the village houses on way and cursing the modern civilization at the total 6 dogs and perhaps equal number of feathered creatures lying on the road, killed in roadhits on a distance of 50 kms; and in an escapist’s bid to forget these, murmuring ‘sansar ki har shah ka itna hi fasana hai, ek dhundh se aana hai, ek dhundh main jaana hai’ reached the village by 8 AM. Took Rakesh and drove to the wetland. Dense clouds, light drizzle, lightening and thunders overhead as if going  to strike me on the head J - I saw the Ruddy Turnstone.. on the road itself.. kept on feeding there for 20 minutes flying short distances as car reached nearby.. though no sign of Whimbrel.. but lot of Terek Sandpipers..Ruffs, Redshanks – both species and numerous Marsh and Wood Sandpipers.. a few Black-tailed Godwits.. Shovelers, Spot-billed and Comb Ducks; numerous Garganeys.. Clamourous and Blythe’s Reed Warblers (more heard with brief glimpses), Black-breasted and Baya Weavers nesting, a dozen plus Painted Storks, Whikered Terns and several other speices.

Highlights : 1 Ruddy Turnstone, 1 Little Heron, 17 Greater Flamingoes, 2+2 Sarus Cranes,  12+ Painted Storks, several Terek Sandpipers, three species of ibises

Dighal with over 200 acres of submerged fields can be a wonderful birding hotspot during winter.

Suresh C Sharma

The news of Ruddy Turstone at Dighal village wetland, in fact the submerged fields spring me to my legs and I drove to the village, about 12-15 kms from Sampla on Beri road.. Reached there in the rains and took
Rakesh Ahlawat. I was there by 8 AM and was free by 12 noon.

Car drive along the canal dirt track was not easy as the freshly laid soil was damp.. with pits here and there.. Was rewarded with the Ruddy Turnstone on the road.. itself passing between the flooded fields..

The bird spread its wing.. to give me a better view... :)

 One pair of Sarus Crane quite close to the road, across the railway line was a treat to the eyes.. our tallest flying bird...

Flooded fields hold promise for a birdful winter ahead..
Rakesh Ahlawat.. the local birder..he spotted Ruddy Turnstone and  Whimbrel from his village wetland..

Little Heron was a good surprise...

Dighal will be interesting to monitor during the winter..

Monday, August 20, 2012

Chopta in Uttarakhand in August 2012

It was Janmashtami, the 10th of August 2012. I decided to be at Rishikesh during the long week end..Got a call from Subhash, my friend that if I could take him along... Took him.. and reached Rishikesh by traffic jams. Spent afternoon and evening in Mochan Chatti... here are some images... Needless to say that Mohan Chatti valley is full of a kind of energy that i are some of the pix..from Mohan Chatti... i took in my earlier trips there one month back :-

 Grey Hornbills near Rishikesh...
 Spotted Deer at Rajaji National Park near Rishikesh
 Crested Bunting.. a handsome bird.. all around... not abundant though.. singly or in pair..
 Crested Kingfisher...Mohan Chatti
 Crimson Sunbird... Mohan Chatti..

 Long-tailed Mohan Chatti
 Great Hornbill.. near Rishikesh
 Grey-headed/hooded Woodpecker near Mohan Chatti
 Ashy Bulbul at Mohan Chatti..
 Brown Hawk Owls..

 Common Iora, near Mohan Chatti

 Crested Serpent  Eagle.. resident of Mohan Chatti..

 Red Jungle Fowl..
 Spot-winged Starling..
 White-crested Laughingthrush..

 Hard work..but happy..
 Tree covered with ferns at Chopta in rain..
 Akash-gamini rivulet valley near village Mastura..
 Confluence of rivers Mandakini and Alaknanda at Rudraprayag..

 Protection from the predators like leopards..
 Chopta .. a gang of large-billed crows..
 Mandakini river near Yashpal Negi's birding camp..


 Dancing peacock at Sonepat..good beginning :)
 Common sight in the hills during rains..
 Hindus know nothing but celebration... Shiva devotees..

A rivulet..