Owls and Nightjars in Thattekad, Kerala

Who doesn’t love owls and nightjars? According to the bird list given to us prior to birding in Kerala, we should see a few and we were not disappointed. The first and probably a common owl in Kerala is the Jungle Owlet found in Thattekad area! This one came up close to check on us.. 🙂

jungle owlet commonly seen in Kerala

jungle owlet commonly seen in Kerala

Then there was Mottled Wood Owl on the list. This was a tricky one as the pair was found in a thorn forest! We battled with thorny shrubs to get close but then they flew away before we got anywhere near! :-/ We battled our way out again and was about to leave in our torn clothes when the pair flew out into the open…phew! It’s definitely worth the scratches.. Like all wood owls, Mottled Wood Owl is huge in size. Notice its got orange eyelids. 🙂 This is a second wood owl for me, the first being Spotted Wood Owl. Click here.

mottled wood owl in Kerala

mottled wood owl in Kerala

The pair flew out from the thorny forest and landed on tree above us

The pair flew out from the thorny forest and landed on tree above us

After a day’s birding, our guide fished out a torch and told us to wait for the evening. Stood in the midst of a dense forest, birds were still very active and we were entertained by their melodic calls as we waited for the Jerdon’s nightjar. But instead came the Indian Scops Owl! The owl was very cooperative and flew to a branch right in front of us! Much thanks to the guide’s torch I had enough light to take a picture of the tiny owl!

Indian scops owl came after dark

Indian scops owl came after dark

The Jerdon’s Nightjar finally came and left in a jiffy after much waiting and again I’m left with a blurry picture of the pretty bird! Apart from the Jerdon’s nightjar, we also saw the Jungle Nightjar (tick off bird list) thanks to our guide who pointed it to us! It took me quite a while to spot the bird at the location. Kerala is a great place for birding, not only do we get to see local endemics but also Sri Lanka birds! Notably, the Sri Lankan Frogmouth. Click here.

 

The elusive nightjar

Jungle Nightjar in Kerala Can you see the bird?

Jungle Nightjar in Kerala Can you see the bird?

Home sweet home for Easter

Just back from a great breakaway in Singapore, and spent quality time with friends and family and of course did some birding! 😛 April is definitely not the best time to visit Singapore as rain showers are regular and that they very likely become thunderstorms! Despite a stormy day, me and my friends hiked up to the Tree-Top walk in MacRitchie Reservoir on Good Friday. None of my friends were hikers and little did they know the whole trip would take more than 3 hours! It was a wet day, but we (only 2) did see some birds along the way- Greater Racket-tailed Drongo, Emerald Dove, Flameback woodpecker, Banded woodpecker, Blue-throated Beeater, etc! By the end of the walk, everyone was flat out! And while some were desperate for food, another was busy soothing the mozzie bites and there were so many that I lost count! =__=’ Nonetheless, the day was fantastic and we had a good prata dinner! 🙂

tree-top walk in Singapore

tree-top walk in Singapore

Despite the tight, busy schedule devouring the local food I sorely missed, I still managed to squeeze in some time to visit Pasir Ris Park, Lower Pierce Reservoir, Japanese Garden and Bidadari Cemetery, etc! Thanks to a good birder friend of mine, who drove us from park to park, from West to East and Central! Thanks Low! 🙂

Here are some photos taken during the trip!

little corella, coppersmith barbet in Singapore

little corella, coppersmith barbet in Singapore

From right-oriental honey buzzard, green imperial pigeon, pied hornbill

From right-oriental honey buzzard, green imperial pigeon, pied hornbill

spotted wood owl- Juvenile

spotted wood owl- Juvenile

Monitor lizards are residents in Singapore parks, do watch out for them..!

lizard sniffing around

lizard sniffing around

And here’s the beautiful sunset in Singapore…taken at Marina Bay Sands. 🙂

Sunset in Singapore

Sunset in Singapore