Saturday, October 29, 2011

Spanish Nature Birding Tour to India - Peter Jones

Peter & Gajinder Singh
Peter strikes rapport with astounding ease and his birding skills are as astounding. He is the tour leader for Spanish Nature Birding Company. And most widely traveled on ornithological quest. 

I had the pleasure of  birding along with him as tour leader from DMC side (Indiafootprints). We had an exhaustive bird watching tour from November 15th to 4th  December. tour Highlights -  Okhla Bird Sanctuary, Bharatpur, Nainital - Sat Tal, Chambal River Sanctuary, Kanha National Park and Pench Tiger Reserve. 

As TL/birding guide, accompanying Peter was a learning experience. His professional skills go beyond spotting and identifying the avian species, being more analytical he could enlighten us a lot on morphology and flight patterns of raptors and birds with uniform characteristics like warblers, pipits and larks.

He loves his beer and jokes around a lot. The best evenings on tour I spent with him by the, bites and his ever accompanying wit.  He is generous and helps the locals wherever he goes. Part of this blog entry and photographs have been published on my blog from his blog which is a professional work and highly informative. With his permission!     

He is an excellent bird photographer with professional skills, his work can also be seen on Facebook.
Desert Warbler - Peter Jones/Spanish Nature
The most exciting moment was discovery of Desert Warbler at Dhikala Complex in Corbett Tiger Reserve. Our accompanying local guide Gajendra Singh spotted it in the complex towards Dhikala Chaud. Peter sighted European Roller at Kanha a rarity in these parts.
Bonelli's Eagle - Peter Jones/Spanish Nature.

Throughout the tour our checklist raced along with supersonic speed and we could sight most of the targeted species. We managed to spot Ibisbill, Greater Painted Snipe, Jack Snipe, Indian Skimmer, Great Hornbill, Eurasian Wryneck, Southern Grey Shrike, Clamorous Reed Warbler,  Altai Accentor, Mountain Hawk Eagle and many many more. 
Painted Snipe- Peter Jones/Spanish Nature.
Red Headed Bunting - Peter Jones/Spanish Nature.
The tour was in two parts and the last leg was in Central India - Kanha National Park and Pench Tiger Reserve. We managed to trek a big male tiger and the rest of the time of tour was spent on extensive bird watching. The reserves are best for forest birds and become more exciting in winters whence migrant arrive. 

Visit Spanish Nature Birding Blog for the checklist compiled by Peter Jones.

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