Day trip to Chilla zone

Few days back on a Sunday morning, me and a few others had decided to visit Chilla zone of Rajaji National Park. We left around 11:30 from Dehradun and arrived just within the hour. Gates did not open until 2:30pm so we had plenty of time. On this trip, we only opted to do the afternoon jeep safari. We did all the bookings on arrival. Jeep costs are Rs.2000 plus Rs.250 for vehicle road fee and an additional entrance fee of Rs.150 per person depending on the number of people there are for the safari.

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Birding at Assan Barrage

Assan Barrage is a small dam located around 40km from Dehradun. The dam is 287.5m long and has water all year round as it is fed water from the Asan river. This dam is responsible for creating of the Asan reservoir or also know as Dhalipur lake. This lake is a good location to view a number of water birds and migratory birds that arrive here in the winter months. The best time to visit between October and December as this attracts a lot of migratory birds to the lake.

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Photographing Hornbills

Grey hornbills are commonly seen in Dehradun but Oriental pied hornbills are very rarely seen within the main city of Dehradun. It was great seeing Oriental pied hornbills without having to travel far and this was the only occassion I had seen one and also was able to photograph it using my Canon gear.

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Raven with kill

This is a series of images where one morning I had observed a raven feasting on probably the carcass of a pigeon. The raven with its kill landed on the branch of the tree and as soon as I observed this sight, I then rushed to get my camera and took this series of shots before it flew off. A raven can be distinguished from a crow in a number of ways as ravens are much larger and the beaks are bigger and curvier compared to the beak of a crow which are slimmer and straighter.

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Brown headed barbet nest building

Last month from my balcony, I had observed this brown headed barbet making its nest or home by creating a hollow within the tree. Birds mainly build nests for hatching of eggs and rasing the young but sometimes after making a nest, they simply abondon it. I find this surprising because I had observed the amount of hard work that is involved when creating a nest inside the tree. They are constantly at work everyday. Nests could be abandoned for two reasons. One is that the presence of a predator such a cat or it could have been a dummy nest.

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Nature Photography at Lodhi Gardens

Lodhi Gardens is also a great place for nature and bird photography. One can spot a number of birds such as woodpeckers, hoopoes, owls, baya weavers and much more however I was only able to photograph a small number of birds and common wildlife such as squirrels. The equipment I used was the Canon 7D and Canon 70-300mm L f/4-5.6 telephoto lens. Here is a small showcase of images I shot that day.

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Birding at Danda Lakhond

Indian white-eye

Danda Lakhond is a locality within Dehradun and I had recently visited the place for some bird photography last Sunday morning. I had spent a few hours here exploring the area and I photographed a number of small birds. The area is surrounded by forest and there is a small temple nearby. Therefore here is a showcase of birds I was able to photograph on that morning. I had used the Canon 7D and Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 L lens to photograph these birds.

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