Following an overnight train journey we arrived in Delhi and went to a nearby hotel for a shower and breakfast before heading to Okhla Bird Sanctuary. We arrived just after sunrise and I was very surprised to see the Yamuna River totally empty – I mean no water at all! However, we picked up numerous new birds for the trip including the four species I always target here. First of all, there were more Yellow-bellied Prinias around than I have ever seen before here, followed by Striated Babbler which was equally as numerous.
It took a while longer to catch up with Striated Grassbird, but eventually we had decent looks at a displaying bird. The final key species wasn’t seen until we decided to return to the shade of the trees, and boy was it hot here today. But after a distant scope view of a probable female White-tailed Stonechat, a cracking male appeared much closer and began to sing and display by fanning its tail revealing the white inner webs….
|Yep, definitely a White-tailed Stonechat...!|
There were numerous other good birds this morning and particular favourites were some Red-naped (Indian Black) Ibis, Painted Stork, Yellow-footed Green-Pigeon, flocks of Bar-headed Goose flying over, Indian Spot-billed Duck, Dusky Warbler, Taiga Flycatcher, and Brown-headed Barbet.
|Indian Spot-billed Ducks|
There was also Glossy Ibis, Purple Heron, Western Marsh Harrier, Asian Koel, Red-breasted Flycatcher, Ashy Prinia, Indian Robin, Baya Weaver, Citrine Wagtail, and some Nilgai as well.
And that was our birding finished in incredible India and we ended up with 311 species seen in 10 days…
Looking forward to returning to India next year for a Snow Leopard expedition, as well as our South India & Andamans tour......