Mainly a travelling day as it took almost 6 hours to reach the wonderful Tiger Moon Resort close to the entrance of Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve today. Along the way we did stop to scope a Variable Wheatear and again to get a good close look at a colony of Streak-throated Swallows nesting under a small bridge. Upon arrival at the lodge we had a great lunch and even had time for a swim for some and a short siesta before driving out to an open rocky habitat.
Our main quarry was Painted Sandgrouse so we walked quite away across some small pools and along a hill without any luck before Ganesh found 6 birds feeding amongst the rocks and bushes which gave great views for a few minutes. Just as we were thinking about getting closer for some photos in the perfect late afternoon light than a Common Kestrel flew over and they all took flight. Unbelievable! We also saw a few Indian Vultures soaring in the distance, as well as Indian Bushlark and Rufous-fronted Prinia here before driving back to the lodge and checking out a small waterhole nearby. A good move as it turned out with a few waders present such as Temminck’s Stint, Spotted Redshank and both Green and Wood Sandpipers. But a Common Hawk-cuckoo was a much better find as we scoped it in a leafless tree after I had called it in from miles away. As we walked back in near-darkness a Large-tailed Nightjar flew over, flocks of Chestnut-bellied Sandgrouse flew past and an Indian Stone Curlew called from the distance.