Sunday, February 10, 2019

Summer Birding & Tiger Safari at Kanha

Ideal time for birding is summers in Kanha National Park. Ironically it is neglected season for the avian whereas the tiger chase is on.  As the heat increases and canopy slims down the visibility of birds becomes higher but by this time the migrants have departed but any way few migrants species do not a summer make. 

The season picks up with nesting of Sun Birds followed by courtship of paradise flycatchers. These are striking in their breeding plumage. Another target species is the Indian Pitta which can be seen lazing along a little bit of shade in the ground which the Orange Headed Thrush roams. Early summer is the time to find the blue capped rock thrush. This is a passage migrant to the North. Painted francolin, white bellied drongo, white browed flycatcher, white eyed buzzard, crested hawk and serpent eagles, grey headed fishing eagle, brown fish owl, streak throated woodpecker, rufous woodpecker, white naped woodpecker, brown fish owl, yellow crowned woodpecker, brown headed pygmy woodpecker, spot bellied eagle owl.....

Malabar Pied Hornbill anytime anywhere takes the cake a sighting comparable to that of a big cat. This is also the breeding time for white rumped shama the magical songstar and the common Iora another lovely singer. Tickell's flower pecker can be photographed with greater ease during this season.So can be the Indian scimitar babbler, black naped flycatcher, scarlet minivet, white bellied minivet, white rumped minivet and scaly bellied minivet. Tickell's flower pecker's pink nest is a wonder to see. The orioles also become active in this season and breed. 

The shrunk water bodies become niche habitats for unseen or rarely seen birds since water is essential ...a patient watch would fetch a sight of bay banded cuckoo, grey bellied cuckoo, oriental scops owl, some crakes and rails.....this is like waiting at water for the tiger which often surfaces during the summer months.... 

The list of birds seen at Kanha National Park is endless. Birding should be combined with tiger safaris which I believe most people do. This write up highlights bird watching at Kanha since it get subdued under the glare of the mega fauna. 
Juv. White Backed Vulture


Crested Serpent Eagle

Sirkeer Malkoha

Wooly Necked Stork

Adjutant Stork

White Rumped Shama

Indian Scops Owl

Black Stork

Indian Scimitar Babbler

Jungle Owlet

Alexandrine Parakeet
Isabelline Shrike

Malabar Pied Hornbill
Uday is naturalist at Kanha
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