Monday, April 15, 2013

April 16 - Thattekad Bird Sanctuary

Having a leisurely breakfast this morning, sitting outside enjoying the views and the weather.
Munnar apparently is the popular location for shooting movies, many used this location including the Life of Pi.

Saw a huge moth on the bushes on the way to breakfast.

After breakfast we went to visit the Kanan Devan Tea company formerly Tata Tea. It had a museum and an outlet store as well. The tea processing was quite interesting and we could see the manufacturing process in operation.

There was an accompanying video, which although interesting was too full of propaganda for the company.

This afternoon we will be going to the Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, also known Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary.

Although the map says 1 hr 46 min, the locals say it is between 2.5 to 3.00 hours. The map has been wrong just about every time on this trip so I will bet on the 3 hours.

The resort had lunch consisting of puri bhaji and 3 types of fruit, packed for us which we ate in the car at Adimali.

We left at exactly 12:30 pm and arrived around 3:15 our guide was Eldhose who met us with a jeep and driver.

At first we drove to a couple of known birding areas to look for grey jungle fowl. No luck, so we got on a boat to look for birds on the river Periyar. We saw many water bird in the two hours that we spent on the boat.

The following are worth mentioning:
Whiskered tern
Small egret sitting on a Lilly pad.
Grey cormorants
Flock of whistling ducks
Huge flock of common black cormorants maybe a 1000
Snake darter bird
White breasted kingfisher
Purple Heron
Black lored yellow tit.

Even though morning would have been better, it was a very successful trip under the circumstances.

Left around 5:45 to drive back Munnar arriving at almost 8:00, apparently took less time possibly due to the reduced traffic. The driving was rather treacherous along the winding mountain roads in the dark with patches of fog and mist reducing the visibility further.

Another excellent 5 course meal starting with lentil carrot soup and ending with a scrumptious dessert.

Need to get an early start tomorrow to get to Kumarakom in time for the boat cruise, so it's early to bed tonight after packing.

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