Thattekad, being the best birding destination in South India is a place covered with lowland and montane forests with various eco habitats that are ideal for forest birds! The 4 of us- Owen, Siuyuen, Davis and I were birding in a forest in noon when our guide Eldhose came up to us and said “one of you follow me first, and next one tomorrow, etc.” Everyone was puzzled and scared! But surely its safe?! So I volunteered and the next minute I was in a tuk-tuk waving goodbye to my friends and they wished me well! >.<”
The tuk-tuk ride seemed like forever! My heart pumped hard- where is he taking me? And at that moment, I realised I left my wallet with my friends and various scenarios popped in my head. The tuk-tuk went off trail and uphill to some quiet paddy field which made me worry more! But very soon I was comforted by the sight of a birding hide!
Slowly we made our way to the hide. I could see now why only one person could bird here- the path was small to only accommodate a one-man hide! As I positioned myself in the hide, I could see a small waterhole in front of me. Very soon birds came out for a drink and bath, the first being the Orange-headed Thrush followed by Puff-throated Babbler, White-cheeked Barbet, Yellow-browed Bulbul, Blue-throated Blue Flycatcher, Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher, Black Crested Bulbul, etc!
It was a cool way to bird and while I watched the birds come by the waterhole… I heard a loud shrieking call from behind. The call was constant and had shifted to my left. I peeped through the small “window” from my hide and I was astounded…my dream bird! It very quickly flew to the waterhole and I had no time to change the setting in my camera! It took a dip and flew off! And what I had was a blurry picture of the Asian Paradise Flycatcher, male! None of my friends who visited the waterhole after me saw the Asian Paradise Flycatcher..
Waterhole is a great way to see birds up close! This was my second time birding at a waterhole. First time was in Thailand, please click here! My South India Guide, Eldhose has delivered his birds as promised. I highly recommend him! 🙂