Tuesday, December 20, 2011

postcard from India

One of the joys of India is that wildlife still lives cheek-by-jowl with a huge human population.

Pair of painted sandgrouse near Ranthambore.

Amlidhe, near Ranthambore.

Indian grass mantis (Schizocephala bicornis), never noticed these guys before but they were quite common at Ranthambore this year.

Great thick-knee

Naked-rumped tomb bat, ticking bats has given the cultural days of many tours a whole new focus. We found two species of tomb bat at Fatehpur Sikri this year.

I really unblocked ibisbill as a tour bogey bird this year. One in China was swiftly followed by five on this trip. An amazing total that included two we found inside Corbett.

Hog deer was a great find in Corbett this year, they can be hard to see.

A total of 24 elephants at Corbett this year, including some great close encounters.

Our full day at Corbett will always be remembered for the half hour we spent in the close company of this Pallas' fish eagle.

Monday, December 12, 2011

good cheer

Another long-awaited species fell for me early this morning, when we found two male cheer pheasants at the drive-to site at Vinayak, near Naini Tal. Splendid! We had to drive away from them in the end.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Tiger, tiger...

It took eight nail-biting, bone-rattling jeep rides at Ranthambore to see tiger this year. On our last morning we had a superb encounter with this five-year old tigress. I found it too, poaching it from under the noses of my guides and driver!