Birding in Rajasthan
cheshta
India > India Travel > Indian Wildlife and National Parks
#1
| Member

Birding in Rajasthan

I am an experienced birder touring Rajasthan for the first time, by bike. I am looking for recommendations for places to visit during the month of October. My traveling companions are not birders but will come along if there is a variety of wildlife to view, or the setting is very attractive.
Any suggestions greatly appreciated, including links to birding sites within India.
Cheshta

15 Replies

#2
| Maha Guru Member
Over the hills where the spirits fly
#3
| Maha Guru Member
I've been to Keoladeo around the end of October and can't say enough nice things about it! By that time, it's full of both migratory birds (storks, egrets...) and the local eagles, kingfishers, painted storks and many whose names I've forgotten.
The map is not the territory. --Alfred Korzybski
#4
| Member
I'm also wondering about birding. My husband and I will be staying at The Birders Inn in Bharatpur by the Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary in mid October. I'm trying to find out how much water has arrived in Keoladeo. Is it enough to attract and hold the water birds that usually come to breed? Or will be just be seeing dry land birds? Or any birds?

I realize that the monsoon rains have been weak in the last few years, and that they started out weak this year. But I have the impression from the few news article references I've been able to find that maybe the rains have finally settled in in earnest in northern India. Does anyone know if this is true?

Also, what other parks with birds are accessable from Bharatpur?
#5
| Member

What Y ear in October in Keoladeo?

Wonder Woman, What year were you in Keoladeo in October?
#6
| Maha Guru Member
I was there in 2003; there was plenty of water that year.

In the week or two prior to heading for Keoladoe, I spent early mornings in Delhi watching the cranes migrate...
The map is not the territory. --Alfred Korzybski
#7
| Maha Guru Member

Originally posted by: Fiber Tiger View Post

Wonder Woman, What year were you in Keoladeo in October?


2003; there was plenty of water that year and I got some super photos.
The map is not the territory. --Alfred Korzybski
#8
| Maha Guru Member

Originally posted by: Fiber Tiger View Post

Wonder Woman, What year were you in Keoladeo in October?


2003; there was plenty of water that year and I got some super photos.
The map is not the territory. --Alfred Korzybski
#9
| Maha Guru Member

Originally posted by: Fiber Tiger View Post

Wonder Woman, What year were you in Keoladeo in October?


2003; there was plenty of water that year and I got some super photos.
The map is not the territory. --Alfred Korzybski
#10
| Maha Guru Member

Originally posted by: Fiber Tiger View Post

Wonder Woman, What year were you in Keoladeo in October?


2003; there was plenty of water that year and I got some super photos.
The map is not the territory. --Alfred Korzybski
#11
| Member
I'm back from from trip to the Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary. I had a wonderful time there, even with very little water. All the water in the park consisted of what they could pump out of the ground to keep some of the local species alive. [However, the news is that 2 new canals are being built to bring in water, and that it will arrive next monsoon, 2010!]

In the meantime, there were plenty of woodland birds to see, and some water birds. It was heartening to me to learn that the water birds come every year and build nests in anticipation of the water coming. When it doesn't come, they move on to other possible breeding grounds. In the meantime, the flocks are keeping the knowledge of this potential breeding ground alive in the younger generations who have been hatched and raised in other areas. So when the water does return, they will still have the memory of where Bharatpur breeding ground is located. This is important because some of the species have life-spans shorter than the number of years that Bharatpur has been without water.

But let me stress that there was plenty to see. And it was wonderful learning about the killer mud-backed [flat backed] turtles, that can even bring down the HUGE Nilgai ungulates that live in the park. The Nilgai are bigger than any horned animal I've ever seen!

Our guide Arvind Raj Chaudhary was excellent, and took us to out of the way places to see birds whose habitat niches were not right at the edge of the paved road running though the park. He helped us record all the birds we'd seen in our Indian birders book.

Our stay at the Birders' Inn was wonderful, too. It's an old Maharaja's hunting lodge, so it has all the ambiance of a palace, without the high prices or fuss. The food was very good, and the service sincerely helpful and pleasant. Nothing over ingratiating, as occurs on some of the more well-trodden tourist group trails.

I'm looking forward to going back when the water returns to see all the water birds I missed. {I did see blacknecked and wooly necked storks and several species of ducks, sand pipers, and kingfishers.} It was all just great.
Fiber Tiger
#12
| Maha Guru Member
Wonder information shared by you fiber Tiger.
Thanks.
Savage Garden
#13
| Member

Dates of visit & guide Arvind

Oops, I forgot to say when tom and I were in Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary. It was the end of October, 2009.

Since we returned, our guide Arvind Raj Chaudhary sent us an email listing all the birds we had seen. It was very helpful. We had been checking them off in an Indian bird book we took along with us, but we were seeing birds faster than we could find them in the book. And sometimes the ornithological world decides to rename some birds, which only slows down the process of keeping the list.

Arvind's email helped be answer some questions I had---was it the white spotted black bird, or the black spotted white bird I saw?

Ask for Arvind if you go. He'll take you off the straight road throught he center of the park to get to the specific habitate niches of birds not visible from the main trafficed road that the rickshaw drivers have to stick to. The rickshaw drivers, by the way, are also knowledgable, too, but restricted to the roads.
#14
| Member

bird watching in rajasthan

Rather late for 'cheshta' but for the benfit of other members-

Another great place for birding in attractive settings is shahpura bagh (located between jaipur & udaipur, a 4 hour drive). There are resident jungle cats & jackals on the wooded property with abundant birdlife - owls, buzzards, partridges,flamebacks, paradise fly catcher in summer. Two sides the heritage property are two lakes, I saw the eurasian curlew & several marsh harriers last year. There is a 150+ acre partly wooded agriculture farm half an hour drive which is worth a visit.

I gather the water levels in most of the 250 lakes in the area are very low this year due to poor monsoons, inspite of which there have been good sighting of sarus cranes, a photograph (in low evening light) of approx 29 sarus cranes was taken last month.


Fiber Tiger,
Would like to use guide Arvind Raj Chaudhary during our visit to Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary. Could you let me have his contact details.
#15
| Member

Arvind Chaudhary, Bird Guide at Keoladeo

Arvind Chaudhary's contact info:
raj_wildtraveler@yahoo.com
Mobile: 9413838813