Makalidurga and Nandi Hills, 221213

Let me start with a beautiful bird…


Field report to the bngbirds egroup:

It was almost exactly three years to the day since I had been to Makalidurga.

click here to see that visit

Since we read the egroup report about the flurry of birds at Makalidurga, we decided that we’d visit again, and in the chilly dark hours of Sunday, we dilly-dallied perhaps a bit too much,


Dilly-dallying for MCS (Mandatory Chai Stop).

so that we finally got to Makalidurga (the Gopalaswamy temple area) only around 8.15 am after a leisurely breakfast at Dodballapur.


Common Lime, Makalidurga.


Common Kestrel, Makalidurga


Rufous-tailed Lark, Makalidurga


Pied Bushchat against the moon!


Life in Makalidurga.


Grasshopper, Makalidurga.

Though we cannot claim that bird sightings overwhelmed us, the birds that we did sight were very rewarding, and we watched several for a long while. Silverbills gathering nesting material; Rufous-tailed Larks foraging on the rocky path; Kestrels hovering; two Sirkeer Malkohas which gave me an exclusive sighting…so went the list of birds, and we were quite happy to soak in the wonderful scenery and the cool, bracing weather as well.


Pied Bushchat female, Makalidurga


Prashanti Express, Makalidurga.

We took a look at Gunjur Lake, as well, but it seems in a very dried-up state, and by the time we got there (nearly noon) there was no activity at all.

We decided that having come all this way, we would go to Nandi Hills as well.


Nandi betta.

We stopped at the base for lunch.




Old pavilion at Nursery area, Nandi Hills.

My advice to anyone who is thinking of visiting Nandi Hills in the evening during this holiday period is simple, and consists of three words. Do not go.

The crowds were quite impressive, and I joked that instead of “birding” or “buttering” we would have to go “peopleing”. In spite of this, the Nursery area, where we spent most of our time, and the Nehru Nilaya area, did not disappoint. Olive-backed Pipits, Blue Rock Thrushes, Verditers, one male Asian Paradise Flyacatcher which Santosh captured in the course of changing from rufous to white… we wandered around, quite content with what we saw, and had a very pleasant time.


and I.


Chandu and Mani


Chandu always has a balanced view


Santosh but not santosh!




The beauty of the Nursery area.


Verditer Flycatcher, Nursery area.


Ashy Drongo.

Blue Rock Thrush male.


Lovely colours…


Almost done!

Thanks to Santosh for putting the bird list together. The Blue-faced Malkoha was rather doubtful, so it’s been left out.


Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher, Nandi Hills.


Santosh clicking the Tickell’s Blue (can you see where it is?)



The Camphor tree, Nandi Hills

Sl no Name Where
1 Babbler, Jungle Makali
2 Barbet, White-cheeked Nandi
3 Bee-eater, Green Makali
4 Bulbul, Red-vented Makali
5 Bulbul, Red-whiskered Makali
6 Bulbul, White-browed Makali
7 Bushchat, Pied Makali
8 Crow, House Makali
9 Crow, Jungle Makali
10 Dove, Laughing Makali
11 Dove, Spotted Makali
12 Drongo, Ashy Nandi
13 Drongo, Black Makali
14 Drongo, White-bellied Nandi
15 Eagle (un-id) Makali
16 Flowerpecker, Pale-billed Makali
17 Flycatcher, Asian Brown Nandi
18 Flycatcher, Asian Paradise Nandi
19 Flycatcher, Red-throated Nandi
20 Flycatcher, Tickell’s Blue Nandi
21 Flycatcher, Verditer Nandi
22 Honey-buzzard, Oriental Nandi
23 Iora, Common Makali
24 Kestrel, Common Makali
25 Koel, Indian Makali
26 Lark, Rufous-tailed Makali
27 Malkoha, Sirkeer Makali
28 Myna, Common Makali
29 Oriole, Indian Golden Nandi
30 Parakeet, Rose-ringed Nandi
31 Prinia, Ashy Makali
32 Prinia, Plain Makali
33 Robin, Indian Makali
34 Shikra Makali
35 Shrike, Bay-backed Makali
36 Silverbill, Indian Makali
37 Spurfowl, Painted Makali
38 Sunbird, Lotens Makali
39 Sunbird, Purple Makali
40 Sunbird, Purple-rumped Makali
41 Swallow, Barn Makali
42 Swallow, Red-rumped Makali
43 Tailorbird, Common Nandi
44 Thrush, Blue Rock Makali
45 Warbler, Greenish Nandi


The kiss, Nandi Hills

To these I have to add, Kite, Common; Kite, Brahminy, Pigeon, Blue Rock, and Warbler, Booted (yes, yes, the eyebrow was there.). There was also the lone Olive-backed Pipit foraging in the Nursery “cage”. We did not see any of the other Thrushes. Some of the birds (eg Blue Rock Thrush)were sighted at both places. The Owlets that we usually see in the trees near Nandi Multicuisine Restaurant (where the road begins, just past the T-junction) were absent. We also *think* we sighted a Black Eagle, but we are not sure.


Red-breasted Flycatcher,Nandi, 221213

Apropos of this, we were wondering if there have been Owl/Owlet sightings from Nandi Hills, as none of us could recollect seeing any such reports…can the experts throw light on this?


Un id Caterpillar


Peninsular Rock Agama


Blue, Various (Definitely Pea Blue and Lesser Grass Blue)
Castor, Common
Cerulean, Common
Coster, Tawny
Crow, Common
Emigrant, Mottled
Jezebel, Common
Lime, Common
Mormon, Common
Rose, Common
Rose, Crimson
Tiger, Plain
Yellow, Three-spot Grass
Yellow, Spotless
Wanderer, Common

Various beetles, bugs, dragonflies, grasshoppers, and spiders.

I’ve put up my SMS on my FB album at

Including some of the fun items that we saw, when we were having lunch!


Dusk, Nandi Hills


Sunset, Nandi Hills

A pleasant and enjoyable day…thanks to my dear friends!


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