Bandipur diaries 2

“Any sighting today?” is a common question after a jungle safari. By “sighting” one usually means the tiger. In our desire to spot the tiger in Bandipur, we often overlook the amazing smaller creatures.

The vast Jungle Lodges & Resorts (JLR) campus itself is home to many birds. On our arrival, we could hear the distinct chirp of the sunbirds as they hopped all over the banyan tree at the entrance.

Purple-rumped sunbirds
Purple-rumped sunbirds

Over the couple of days at JLR and in the Bandipur forest, we saw and heard many birds, and were able to photograph a few of them. Of course, the peacocks stand out.

Read Bandipur diaries 1 here

Indian peacock

During our last visit to Bandipur in March 2022, the peacocks were very active in wooing the peahens so we saw multiple instances of the peacock dance.

Peacock performance
Peacock performance (Pic: 29th March 2022)
Peacock with ope wings
A magnificent peacock display (Pic: 29th Mar 2022)
Tickel’s flycatcher at JLR
Cinerous tit
Cinerous tit at JLR
Scarlet minivet female at JLR
Scarlet minivet male, high on on a tree
Red vented bulbul
Red-vented bulbul
Asian green bee eater
Asian green bee eaters
Rufous treepies
Common mynahs
Common mynahs
Jungle mynah on the back of a sambar deer
Jungle crows on gaur bac
Jungle crows on the back of a huge Gaur

The numerous waterbodies within Bandipur forest provide the ideal habitat for several species of waterbirds and other water-loving creatures.

Sunbathing tortoise
Sunbathing tortoises
Red wattled Lapwing on the far bank
Red-wattled Lapwing on the far bank
Red-wattled lapwing
Red-wattled lapwing, closeup during our previous visit. (Pic: 29th Mar 2022)
Garganey (female), migratory from Eurasia
Little cormorant drying its wings
Little cormorant drying its wings
Little grebe
Common sandpiper
Common sandpiper
Wood or Green Sandpiper
Wood or Green Sandpiper
Indian pond heron
White-throated kingfisher
White-throated kingfisher

The uninitiated eye would pass them off as kites or eagles, but there are different species of birds of prey at Bandipur. The large serpent eagle was far off behind branches and we were unable to get a focussed shot.

Crested hawk eagle
Black-winged kite
Common buzzard
Common buzzard
Honey buzzard
Serpent eagle
Serpent eagle (sadly off-focus)

Drongos, magpie robins, woodpeckers, babblers, bushchats, hoopoes. coucals, koels, barbets, doves… The Bandipur Forest is home to these and many more.

Indian roller bird
The multi-coloured Indian roller during our last trip (Pic: 30th Mar 2022)

More about Bandipur in my next post.

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