Eravikulam National Park. Munnar.

2017-12-02| Askar Isabekov

I waited the visit to Eravikulam like a holiday. I changed the date of booking of hotel in Alappuzha because I waited the sunny day to visit Eravikulam. Yesterday I specially checked the bus to Eravikulam. If I had a tuxedo, I would to be in tuxedo. Kuttettan Munnar said me about the spot near cafe inside National Park, near which I can to view many species of birds. I thought I will enter to park, find the spot and will be in this spot 4 or 5 hours. But staff directs all the visitors to bus which should to move us to the point of view of Nilgiri Tahrs, the main target of National Park. I had no choice. In final destination all the visitors went to the 1.5 km road up to mountain. I tried to watch the birds in road sides but found only two species of Leaf Warblers, Pied Bushchats, and or course Red-whiskered Bulbuls. Also me and other visitors took photos of Tahrs feeding in the meadow very close of road. Very nice situation! But when I later saw the same Tahrs walking among the visitors I think it's more than enough. In my opinion visitors should not contact with wild animals too close.

This moment I found the spot about which Kuttettan Munnar told me. Really nice spot. Next two hours or more I stayed in this spot, also presence of nearby cafe made this spot very comfortable. From time to time different birds appeared in the thickets, some of them (such as Malabar Whistling Thrush, Grey Wagtail, Bulbuls) were in view almost all the time. Other ones (Palani Laughingthrushes, Indian Blackbirds) regularly appeared. White-bellied Shortwing also regularly observed, but this shy birds usually very rare stay in open area a long time, only one bird gave me a chance to take photo from a short distance in the end of session. The Scaly Thrush, Black-and-Orange Flycatcher only once of each recorded. Sometimes Mongose came to spot, this times all the birds flew away. Finally I took photos of all birds I seen. Also should to say the birds well reacted to the feeding. So if you are going to visit this spot, please don't forget the rice or other birds food.

After visiting Eravikulam I went to Munnar by legs and found some birds in the road sides: Pied Bushchat, popular in this area, Indian Yellow Tit, my first record in Kerala, and some other birds. Inside Munnar I wanted to take photos of Long-tailed Shrike I saw in first day in Munnar, and the Swallow with dark-red rump, which I saw everyday flying along the river together with Dusky Crag Martins. But Martins and Swallow seems to fly along the river only in rainy days. Today there are no any Martins in my familiar spots. But I found not one but four or five Long-tailed Shrikes. All of them have pure grey mantle with some rufous close to rump, the specimen with all-grey off-rufous mantle was not found.

My last day in Munnar made me feel good.

1. Nilgiri Tahr

2. Eravikulam National Park

3. Tickell's Leaf Warbler (Phylloscopus affinis)

4. Pied Bushchat (Saxicola caprata)

5. Greenish Leaf Warbler (Seicercus trochiloides)

6. Visitors and Tahrs

7. Nilgiri Langur (Trachypithecus johnii)

8. Nilgiri (Scaly) Thrush (Zoothera dauma neilgherriensis)

9. Mongose

10. Black-and-Orange Flycatcher (Ficedula nigrorufa)

11. Malabar Whistling Thrush (Myophonus horsfieldii)

12. Palani Laughing-Thrush (Montecincla fairbanki)

13. White-bellied Shortwing (Sholicola albiventris)

14. Indian Blackbird (Turdus simillimus)

15. Red-Whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus)

16. Nilgiri Flycatcher (Eumyias albicaudatus)

17. Indian Yellow Tit (Parus aplonotus)

18. Square-tailed Bulbul (Hypsipetes ganeesa)

19. Ashy Drongo (Dicrurus leucophaeus)

20. Long-Tailed Shrike (Lanius schach)

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