Valley School, 050113

My first birding outing of 2013….

050113 vs sunrise

This morning, 11 of us went to the Valley School, off Kanakapura Road…and as usual, the Valley did not disappoint us! After the MCS (Mandatory Chai Stop) while we were waiting for one of the two Nitins in our group, we proceeded to the Valley/Kanakapura Road junction, and began our birding. Yes, we concentrated on the birds. I noted some butterflies in passing, that’s all.

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Rosy Pastors on the wire

A Greater Coucal opened our innings, walking boldly along the newly-constructed crossroad. We were stopped in our tracks by two Palash (Flame of the Forest) trees in full bloom, which were, as usual, bird magnets. The road to the Valley also yielded Grey Francolins, scurrying off amidst the harvested fields, some Bushlarks fluttering up into the sky to sing and fall back like autumn leaves….we finally managed to park and enter the campus, for which I had obtained permission.

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Group having chai

Orioles, Flowerpeckers, Drongos, and a Hoopoe….we went on to the almost-dried-up pond, and found several waterfowl there. A juvenile Brahminy Kite (which we thought was a Honey Buzzard…we didn’t notice the head carefully!) fished in the water, as did two Ashy Drongos…drongo behaviour that I had not seen before. All this kept us at the pond, while the sun climbed…it’s just not been feeling like a Bangalore winter at all.

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INTERMEDIATE AND LITTLE EGRETS

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LITTLE GREBES

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LITTLE GREBES IN B’N’W

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PALE-BILLED FLOWERPECKER

trying to gobble the fruit of the Singapore Cherry…whole!

The highlight of the day, perhaps, was a

BLUE-BEARDED BEE-EATER:

bbb eater 050113 vs

but all the Flycatchers were a delight to watch, too. I was afraid that all the group could not see the first Tickell’s Blue…but the birds, with their sweet song, obliged, and everyone got to see their beauty. The Fantails, the Asian Paradise, the Asian Brown….the bamboo grove is truly Flycatcher territory.

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GOLDEN ORIOLE

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Reflection of Date Palms

At one point, we saw four Oriental Honey Buzzards soaring overhead, and I hope someone got the shot, because I was too busy just gaping upwards!

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Installation with paper kites for a Mela in the Valley School in the afternoon.

As we ended the trail, Mr and Mrs Small Minivet, and Mr and Mrs Great Tit, obliged us by appearing the Jacaranda trees near us. I called it Sitting Birding…and mindful of the toilets near us, Vinay re-named it Smell Birding. We certainly weren’t complaining, though.

We sighted a

QUETZAL:

quetzal 050113 vs

ccts flwr 050113 vs

and a

JAGUAR

on our way home:

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The beauty of a cactus flower

Most of us stopped over at Udupi Banashree for breakfast, and then dispersed, happy with our morning.

Birds:

Avadavat, Red
Babbler, Jungle
Barbet, Coppersmith
Barbet, White-cheeked
Bee-eater, Blue-bearded
Bee-eater, Small Green
Bulbul, Red-vented
Bulbul, Red-whiskered
Bushchat, Pied
Bushlark, Indian
Bushlark, Jerdon’s
Buzzard, Oriental Honey
Cormorant, Little
Coucal, Greater
Crow, House
Crow, Large-billed
Dove, Laughing
Dove, Spotted
Drongo, Ashy
Drongo, Black
Egret, Cattle
Egret, Intermediate
Egret, Little
Falcon, Amur (well, OK, that was to see if you were paying attention!)
Flowerpecker, Pale-billed
Flycatcher, Asian Brown
Flycatcher, Asian Paradise
Flycatcher, Tickell’s Blue
Flycatcher, White-browed Fantail
Francolin, Grey
Grebe, Little
Heron, Indian Pond
Hoopoe, Common
Junglefowl, Grey
Kingfisher, White-throated
Kite, Black
Kite, Brahminy
Koel, Asian
Lapwing, Red-wattled
Leafbird, Golden-fronted
Minivet, Small
Moorhen, Common
Munia, White-rumped
Myna, Common
Myna, Jungle
Oriole, Eurasian Golden
Parakeet, Rose-ringed
Pigeon, Blue Rock
Pipit, Paddyfield
Prinia, Ashy
Robin, Indian
Robin, Oriental Magpie
Sandpiper, Green
Starling, Chestnut-tailed
Starling, Rosy
Sunbird, Purple
Sunbird, Purple-rumped
Swallow, Barn
Swallow, Red-rumped
Swamphen, Purple
Swift, Asian Palm
Tailorbird, Common
Tit, Great
Wagtail, Grey
Wagtail, White-browed
Warbler, Blyth’s Leaf
Warbler, Booted
Warbler, Tickell’s Leaf
Waterhen, White-breasted
White-eye, Oriental

Butterflies

Blues, Various
Castor, Common
Emigrant, Common
Emigrant, Mottled
Gull, Common
Jay, Common
Jezebel,Common
Crimson-tip, White
Orange-tip, White
Orange-tip, Yellow
Pioneer
Psyche
Rose, Common
Rose, Crimson
Tiger, Glassy
Tiger, Plain
Wanderer, Common
Yellow, Spotless Grass
Yellow, Three-spot

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Poinsettia flowers

Here are my SMS (Shamelessly Mediocre Shots) at

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151236169163878.474896.587058877&type=1

Here’s everyone except Ganesh, heads down, checking their shots, this is called “chimping”!

chimping 050113 vs

Tomorrow, by popular vote…back to the Bannerghatta Zoo area…everyone who sees this in time, and would like to come along, is welcome! Departure from Shoppers’ Stop at 6 am.

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