Nava Talav

Rudraksha Chodankar
Day 2: The areas to be explored were more of wetlands which included Nava Talav. After a quick tea, we started at around 6:30 AM. Bura Bhai halted at a small lake which was beside the road where we managed to see quite a number of wetland birds that included Little Ringed Plovers, Wood Sandpipers, Ruff, Spotted Redshank, Egrets, a variety of Ducks, Indian Peafowls and so on. After spending sometime, we entered the Nava Talav area where there were multiple water ponds. We halted at another couple of ponds where we saw Painted Storks, Little stints, couple of Gulls, Pied Avocets,Common Snipe, Northern Pintail, Common Kingfisher, Crested Lark, Pied Kingfishers and yes the relatively rare Mallard Duck.Finally as we reached the Nava Talav area, which is again a huge wetland, we saw a Greater Spotted Eagle perched just next to the water body. There was also a Steppe Eagle nearby. Wild India team had ensured to carry packed breakfast from the resort which we enjoyed along with the sightings of a variety of ducks, flamingoes and pelicans. Exploring the area a bit more Bura Bhai finally helped us in spotting the White-Tailed Lapwing. Other birds spotted were the Common Greenshank, Black-Tailed Godwit, Great White Pelicans, Marsh Sandpipers, Bar-headed Geese, Marsh Harrier, Grey-Lag Geese, Yellow-wattled Lapwings, Red-Wattled Lapwings, Common Cranes, Demosile cranes among others. It was noon already and we were back to the resort for lunch after yet another fantastic birding session.As with Day 1, the Day 2 post lunch safari started by 2:30 PM. This time, the area to be explored was Kharaghoda. Kharaghoda is a little far from our resort (which is closer to Bajana), hence we took around 45 minutes to reach. We were soon on the lookout for the elusive Macqueen’s Bustard. As we were exploring, we came across Chestnut-Bellied Sandgrouse, Common Kestrel and Long-Billed Pipit. Bura Bhai soon spotted a Desert fox relaxing under the shade of a tree in the open. Undoubtedly one of the key highlights of the trip. We spotted another individual again in the same area. Exploring further, we saw a Macqueen’s Bustard in flight. Unfortunately none of us could click it and had to be satisfied with a flight sighting for few seconds. We did explore more but no luck with the Macqueen’s Bustard. While driving back, we spotted quite a number of Syke’s Nightjars as well. Yet another lifer. Soon we moved closer to a huge wetland at around 4:30 PM, which was pretty much covered with the beautiful Lesser Flamingoes. Special mention here for Subhash Sir as he clicked some lovely Silhouette clicks for all of us. As we were busy clicking the Flamingoes, suddenly all of them flew for a moment and it was because of advent of the majestic Eastern Imperial Eagle. We also managed to click some harriers at this place and did some group photography with the backdrop of the lovely sunset.