Here is a portrait I made yesterday of The Peninsular rock agama (Psammophilus dorsalis) in Nandi Hills, Karnataka.
Rock agamas are a common sight here. I found this particular one on the tree basking in sun. A nice head turn by the agama and the spot light/harsh sunlight falling on it gave me the opportunity to get a nice underexposed background.
Hope you like it. Critics and Comments are welcome.
The Kashmir Flycatcher(Ficedula subrubra) is a small passerine bird in the flycatcher family Muscicapidae.
This is an insectivorous species which breeds in the north-west Himalayas in the Kashmir region. It is migratory and winters in the Western Ghats and in the hills of central Sri Lanka.
It is 13 cm long.The male has a grey-brown back with an orange-red throat, breast and flanks, bordered with black on the throat and breast. Females and first-winter birds have slightly browner upper parts, and the red of the underparts reduced to just a pinkish wash.
The Kashmir Flycatcher breeds in deciduous forest with dense undergrowth, nesting in a hole in a tree and laying 3-5 eggs which are incubated by the female. It winters in gardens, tea estates, forest edges, and open areas within forest, generally above 750 m.
The song is a short melodic sweet-eet sweet-eet-did-he, and the call is a sharp chak.
This migratory flycatcher is a vulnerable species with a decreasing population and breeding range, which is also severely fragmented as a result of the destruction of temperate mixed deciduous forests by commercial timber extraction, agriculture and livestock grazing.(Source – Wikipedia)
Both photos were taken in Ooty ,using Nikon D300s.Nikkor 70 – 300mm VR lens.
I had been to Ooty with Vinod during the last week of march. It was a good birding trip. We got to see this rare bird along with many endemic species(including Black chinned Laughing Trush or Nilgiri Laughing Trush ). I made some good images of Grey headed canary Flycatcher and Nilgiri Flycatcher (will post them soon) , I will definitely go back to photograph the endemics. We had gone in an open jeep and it was great, we had to embrace the scorching heat and rain!(will tell more about this later)
Have a Happy Weekend 🙂
Indian roller is one of those few birds I knew before I started bird watching as they were very commonly seen perched along roadside wires and trees en route to my native.
The Indian roller (Coracias benghalensis) gains its name from its elaborate courtship displays, during which it performs some startling aerobatics culminating in a series of ‘rolling’ motions. The Indian roller is a medium-sized bird (26–27 cm ).The breast is brownish,the crown and vent are blue.The primaries are deep purpulish blue with a band of pale blue.The tail is sky blue with a terminal band of Prussian blue and the central feathers are dull green.The neck and throat are purplish lilac with white shaft streaks.The three forward toes are united at the base.Its eyes are greyish-brown and the strong, hook-tipped bill is blackish-brown. (Source –Wikipedia , Arkive)
First image was shot in October while the 2nd was in December 2012,in Hessarghatta.
This bird feeds primarily on insects, in particular beetles, crickets, and grasshoppers. It also regularly consumes flying insects such as wasps, flies, moths and butterflies . Where available, amphibians also form a large part of its diet.It prefers open cultivated areas or light deciduoud forest. (Source – Arkive )
In flight , Indian Roller is a spectacular sight to watch. I have tried capturing flight shot but haven’t been successful yet! 😦 . Will post that as and when I get.
Critics and comments are welcome 🙂
The Common Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus) is a bird of prey species belonging to the kestrel group of the falcon family Falconidae.It is a bird of farm land and open areas. It is known for the way it hovers above the ground , in search of prey.
It is a medium- sized (32- 29 cm ) falcon with long wings and tail.Plumage is light chestnut – brown with blackish spots on the upper-side and buff with narrow blackish streaks on the underside.The sexes are distinct, in males the rump and tail are bluish grey and unbarred,whereas in females they are brownish – red with dark barring.The head is grey in males and brown in females.( Source – Wikipedia)
10th November, was a good day for me. Prior to this , I have tried almost a month to photograph this lady. Though I had managed to take few shots,I was not happy with it. On this day, I spent a good amount of time with her, I saw her Hoover , I saw her preen , I saw her catch insects. I managed to click shots which I wanted.
Ground Level shot of Common Kestrel
Common Kestrel – Preening
Please click HERE to read about Preening.
Lost in Preening
(Can you spot the head?)
The below image was taken on 1st November and it is special to me. It was raining here in Bangalore for almost a week (remember Cyclone Nilam?), I had no plans of going for birdwatching or for photography as I thought it would rain , My friend (Hemanth) called me the previous night and asked if we can go, if there is no rain. On this day, it was drizzling but we thought it would stop and went ahead with the plan . But , the drizzle slowly picked up for our bad, added to that going in activa made it even more difficult for us. Mud went inside all possible parts it could go to and we had tough time cleaning it. It was still drizzling and was impossible to go back in the same path , we planned to take the other exit . On the way to exit , we stopped to take a photograph of a Paddy field Pipit but to our luck this beauty came and perched close to where we were.It was first time I was that close to any bird , I could see the details of it just with my eyes. I still cannot forget that eye contact. Got my first Portrait this day ! .Sometimes things just happen 🙂
The Kestrel feeds largely on small mammals, and small birds.Invertebrates are also very important components of the diet.Kestrels hunt by sight,upon spotting their quarry,they plunge to the ground ,seizing the prey with their talon.(Source – Arkive)
Kestrels, when hovering are able to stay still even in strong winds. I have seen one on top of Tadiyandamol hover against strong winds.
Nikon D300s,Nikkor 70-300mm VR lens , in Hessarghatta.
Hope you all had a great weekend ,Good Night 🙂
Here is another post on Pied Bushchat Saxicola caprata, but this time its Female. For details and earlier post please click Here.
Have a good day.
Indian giant squirrel or Malabar giant squirrel are endemic to India.They are the largest tree squirrels in Asia.It spends most of time high in the tree canopy and is active during day.They are important disperser of seeds.
These squirrels have a very unusual feeding posture, where they balance their enormous body on small branches.
The major threats to the Indian giant squirrels are habitat loss due to agricultural expansion and hunting.
Nikon D300s, Nikkor 70 -300 mm vr,in Seetha Nadi Nature Camp, Agumbe.
Hope you like it .
Ashy – crowned Sparrow Lark (Eremopterix griseus) is a lovely, small bird (12cm) about the size of sparrow.It is also known as Ashy – crowned Finch Lark or Black-bellied Finch-Lark.It is a bird of open dry habitat.The males are marked with a contrasting black and white face pattern,females are sandy brown.
They nest in cavities in stone walls or in holes in an embankment, lining the nest with grass and animal hair.The males are black with white shoulder and vent patches whose extent varies among populations. Females are predominantly brownish while juveniles are speckled.This species is insectivorous, and like other chats hunts from a prominent low perch.(Source – Wikipedia )
Nikon D300s with Nikkor 70 – 300mm VR , in Hessarghatta, Bangalore.
Hessarghatta is a wonderful place for photographing birds. Unfortunately, this wonderful grasslands is under threat , please sign the below petition to save this habitat,
Thank you .
This weekend has been the most unproductive one in a long time!!! It was pouring in Bangalore so I thought ill head to my native (Shanthigrama) and try something out here.But to my bad luck it started raining here as well .Here is the picture of a Green Bee eater in rain which I had taken here in Shanthigrama, last month.
The Green Bee-eater, Merops orientalis, (also known as Little Green Bee-eater) is a near passerine bird in the bee – eater family.They breed in South-eastern Asia, and seen during the season in most places in peninsular India.
It is a richly coloured slender bird. It is about 9 inches (16–18 cm) long with about 2 inches made up by the elongated central tail-feathers. The entire plumage is bright green and tinged with blue especially on the chin and throat. The crown and upper back tinged with golden rufous. The flight feathers are rufous washed with green and tipped with blackish. A fine black line runs in front of and behind the eye. The iris is crimson and the bill is black while the legs are dark grey.
Bee-eaters predominantly eat insects, especially bees, wasps and ants, which are caught in the air by sorties from an open perch. Before swallowing prey, a bee-eater removes stings and breaks the exoskeleton of the prey by repeatedly thrashing it on the perch.
Hope you like it.
Brahminy Kite ( Haliastur indus) is one of the common medium -sized raptor(48cm).They are more scavengers than hunters as these birds have taken to stealing and scavenging than killing. However they do hunt small prey like fish,crabs,frogs, insects etc
It is a resident in India ( they are sedentary and do not migrate ),it is considered as the representation of GARUDA,the sacred bird of Lord Vishnu.
Its head,neck and breast are white with rest of its body bright chest nut and primaries tipped black and the legs are short and not feathered,the eye is dark and yellow colored bill is strongly hooked. It has long broad rounded wings ,short and rounded tail when fanned.
The call of the Brahminy Kite is a thin mewing scream ‘kweeaa’ or ‘kyeeer’ usually while soaring.
All 3 photos were taken with Nikon D40,Nikkor 70-300 non VR lens , MF
I saw them eating while flying and stealing!!! I even clicked those moments but it did not come well.
All comments and suggestions are welcome.
Good Night 🙂