Posts Tagged ‘lizard’

Ravugodlu, 4th Sunday Bngbirds outing, 250819

August 29, 2019

Email to the Bngbirds egroup:

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Since it was cloudy with a possibility of rain, I was quite heartened that 30 of us decided to join for the 4th Sunday Bngbirds outing. We were all quite punctual at the meeting point near the small Anjaneya shrine,

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and the two majestic Banyan trees; and a few Indian Grey Hornbills flying past, and the loud cheep-cheep of a Tailorbird started us off on the path.

Ravugodlu is one of the last semi-scrub forest patches

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that groups can be taken to, without having to go to various Forest Department offices to submit applications in triplicate, for permission (only to be told that you should have done this a week ago!) We enjoyed the scenery and the bluffs on the side of which lies the Ragihalli area. It was delightful to children like Saanvi and Aanvi (er, not related to each other…they just happen to have similar names!) join in, binoculars and note-books in hand.

A few Green Bee-eaters, and the ubiquitous Black and Brahminy Kites were in the air; the rains had ensured that the pond along the path was also full. Several yellow birds…Ioras and Oriental White-eyes

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…brought flashes of brightness to the cloudy atmosphere.

The group rather quickly straggled along the path and I was never sure whether all of us saw all the birds or not! The first sighting of a Shikra, and a Short-toed Snake Eagle, upped our raptor count; we looked it up in the bird book,

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to be sure.

At the pond, we found a solitary White-browed Wagtail, and a small blue jewel of a kingfisher flew about, trying to get breakfast.

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As we reached the part of the path which widens out into a flat area, with the hill slopes and rocks surrounding us, the sunshine finally broke through the clouds and promptly pushed up the temperature! Little Swifts and Palm Swifts swooped around overhead, as did Red-rumped Swallows. We were delighted to see large flocks of Rose-ringed Parakeets flying around into the mango orchard area, as they looked for nesting sites and foraged. These may be very common birds even in the urban setting; but their bright green plumage and red beaks add a lovely dash of colour to any birding outing!

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At the open area, those of us who reached first, brought out our snacks, and I am afraid, though not repentant, that I pigged out on a lot of stuff ( eg Mamta’s superb dhokla and the soy sticks from Haldiram.) Fruits, almonds, many crisp snacks from the recent Janmashtami festival…all were despatched with gusto!

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Though I expected at least half the group to catch up, many people had already left, so only a few people joined up with us. We looked up to see another raptor, and with my usual question mark hovering over my head, I was able to confirm it only later as a Bonelli’s Eagle.

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As we walked back, we looked at several other living creatures…the beauty of the crimson seed pods of the Indian Redwing;

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blooming wildflowers such as the Node Flower,

IMG_0087 Allmania nodiflora, Node Flower Allmania

Indian Cadaba,

IMG_0083  Cadaba fruticosa, Indian Cadaba

Coat Button, the Devil’s Coach Whip, Vishnukranti, Cyanotis; the children had great fun touching the Touch-me-not leaves! I was able to show people near me the seed pods of the Indrajao or Pala Indigo,

Several reptiles like the Garden Lizard

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and the Rock Agama

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kept us occupied. Spiders of all kinds…Lynx, Funnel Web, Orb Weavers, Social Spiders…truly wove a web of fascination for us. A little Dung Beetle added some metallic colour.

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We didn’t see too many butterflies, but a Crimson Rose, some Common Mormons, a Common Lime, Emigrants, Jezebels,a Common Baron

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and Grass Yellows which looked like little flitting blossoms in the grass and reeds, added their beauty to the scene. A grasshopper was beautifully camouflaged in the reeds.

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As we returned to our cars, we were suddenly treated to a magnificient finale to the outing…a Black Eagle

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swept past quite low, and had us walking off in its wake, hoping to have a better sight of it.

After this unexpected bonus, I am sorry to say that all the erudite scientific and nature discussions gave way to “Where shall we stop for breakfast?” and the Davangere Benne Dose eatery was the unanimous choice.

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A few of us enjoyed the crisp dose-s with the dollops of potato and butter,

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and with our tummies, minds,hearts (and possibly camera memory cards!) full, we dispersed back to our separate lives and weekend commitments.

Here is most of our group before the start of the walk:

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The eBird list is at

https://ebird.org/india/view/checklist/S59241149

(62 species…not a bad haul for a monsoon morning!)

I have put up my photos on a FB album at

https://www.facebook.com/deemopahan/media_set?set=a.10156844507918878&type=3

For the non-FB friends, the Flickr album is at

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A few of us went to the Bhutanahalli pond to observe the Baya Weaver nesting activity:

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Even here, there were several handsome six-footers to captivate us:

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Jewel Bug

IMG_0160 Sweet Potato Weevil
Sweet Potato Weevil

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Blister Beetle

IMG_0165 Tussock Moth Cat early instar
Tussock Moth caterpillar

Every outing is full of the wonders of the natural world!

Deepa.

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Bannerghata zoo area with Chandu, and David Frye, 120414

April 17, 2014

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David Frye (seen here, posing with all the wildlife on sale at the Zoo) is a birder from Detroit, and the previous week we had taken him to Hoskote Lake. We had a good time, too!

In the zoo, we hunted for this

GREAT PIED HORNBILL

all over the cage, and finally found him right next to us, huddling in the corner of the cage (not distressed at all!) and looking at us with a beady eye.

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We saw a

JUNGLE MYNA

trying, literally, to feather its nest:

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This

TICKELL’S BLUE FLYCATCHER

deighted us:

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The

GULMOHAR or the MAYFLOWER

had started blooming:

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The flowers of the

RAIN TREE

looked lovely, too.

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The Kingfisher Pond (I was very happy to hear the guard in charge of boating call it by this name, and say, “A naturalist has named it!”) looked green and peaceful:

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Here’s David, documenting something:

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I couldn’t id this tree:

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the

QUEEN’S FLOWER

is another tree in full bloom everywhere now:

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A

GARDEN LIZARD

displayed its scales:

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Chandu and David walk down Flycatcher Avenue:

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See the beauty of Flycatcher Avenue:

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This is the only SMS I could get of the

GREY-BELLIED CUCKOO:

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This

PALE-BILLED FLOWERPECKER

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looked quite greedy as it took a whole Singapore Cherry in its mouth (but it only sucked at the juice and threw the fruit down.)

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this

PADDYFIELD PIPIT

foraged along the path to the Quarry Pond area:

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perky little bird:

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the

RED-WATTLED LAPWING

made its characteristic “Didyoudoit?” call:

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It was lovely to see the Champaka Dhama temple on top of the sheet rock, from the orchard area:

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a

PENINSULAR ROCK AGAMA (male)

showed its breeding colours:

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This is a very non-green “green” photograph, of broken glass litter left behind by visitors:

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Some of the animals on sale were very realistic!

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We saw these two, with a net and a cage, and we hope they wer
e not going to catch butterflies, because that is illegal:

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Everywhere, the

DARK BLUE TIGERs

were flitting around, on their annual migration:

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David appeared to enjoy his morning, and we gave him a really democratic experience..we took him from my home to the zoo area by one rickety bus and brought him back in an even more rickety one!

Let me close with this close-up of the Queen’s Flower:

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Superb weekend….

September 29, 2008

Two birding trips, one to Ramnagara and one to Ragihalli in the Bannerghatta Forest area….an evening with old film music and great friends….catching up with old friendships…what could be better? I am a very lucky person.

Four of the most common things one can see on a trip to the outdoors:

The MORNING GLORY (Convolvulus):

The GARDEN LIZARD (Calotes versicolor)

The dragonfly (Dontask methisname)

And a PALM SQUIRREL (Onceagain noname), straying from the tree for which he is named, and enjoying the fruit of the CASUARINA tree:

Lots of pics to follow…once I get done with my backlog of work!

Camouflage of the Draco (Flying Lizard)

July 4, 2008

It’s my turn to post another “where is it” picture….this one’s much easier (and of course, a far fouler photograph!) than kalyan‘s though! Here’s the Draco or the Flying Lizard in the Salim Ali bird sanctuary in Thattekad, Kerala:

Here it is, after it’s scuttled a bit around the tree-trunk, just look at the beauty of its neck-fan:

And a view of another lizard, the following morning:

Uploading more pictures…will get around to posting soon..but right now, things are hectic and very mixed-up…

Camouflage

April 22, 2008

Here’s a picture by M Niranjan, whom I got to meet through the JLRNTP:

http://www.indianaturewatch.net/displayimage.php?id=46074

And just to refresh everyone’s memories, here’s my image of the Crested Lark camouflaged on the ground:

http://deponti.livejournal.com/149407.html

This was taken from about 20 yards away…. a hawk or an eagle would spot this lark from several hundred feet overhead…!

In Nature, the prey plays “hide” and the predators play “seek”….but it’s a deadly, serious process that’s not a game at all…

Rock Agama and Google

June 4, 2007

On the trip to Manchinabele Dam area yesterday, I got this shot of the Rock Agama:

Rock Agama

Then I decided to google for information about it, and the Wiki for “Agama” has this to say:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agama_(lizard)

And, just to confuse you, also this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agama

And, to cap it all, here’s something from a good friend!

http://chirdeepshetty.blogspot.com/2005/06/rock-agama.html

Differences…

October 25, 2005

Halloween is approaching in the US….though I think that,mostly, people are the same everywhere, differences in customs do interest me. Here, the dust everywhere ensures that all too often, we have actual “websites” hanging greyly from various corners in our houses, and it is a chore to clean the cobwebs off…and in the US, in banks and offices and I don’t know how many homes, it is such an unknown entity that they actually use artificial webspray to create cobwebs to set the scene for Halloween decorations!

In the same way, when my daughter invited someone home for dinner, she came wearing a brooch in the shape and form of a lizard. To us, this is a sometimes-tolerated (it eats cockroaches) and sometimes-hated, but very common, domestic creature…we would not dream of wearing jewellery in its shape. Though one of the most popular of the very beautiful mud-sculptures in West Bengal when I grew up was an intensely realistic one of a lizard eating up a cockroach, I would never have actually bought one of those, either!

Makes me think, though…why would the shape of a cobra be so commonly used in jewellery when that, too, was quite common some decades ago? The ways of human beings are unendingly interesting!