Friday, January 29, 2021

Birds at Bhigwan

This is the second time that I have been to Bhigwan and being unlucky with flamingo sightings. But then the other birds made up for the loss. I am sure the one on the right is an Ibis.
This pond heron was on a tree. He did a wonderful display of sweeping down into the water to catch a fish and come back to the same spot to display his catch. Did he put on a show knowing that I was filming him or was this his daily routine of having breakfast?
The yellow wagtail was busy running after the small insects.
While witing for our boat, I was observing the birds on the far off trees.
It is interesting to see how they glide down and settle on a boulder so that thy have a better vantage point to spot the fish.
If you have the patience, you can catch these birds in action. I was trying to capture this lady to show that the daily chores around the area goes on, when I saw a bird behind her tossing a fish.
I like the black band over the eye of the green bee eater. (reminded me of Zorro)  Their breeding season is from March to June and they nest in hollows in vertical mud banks.
These little cormorants were fishing in groups. It is a wonderful sight to see them take off together and land at a different place for the next catch.
Apparently a flock of Cormorants is known as a "Gulp". . One thing I noticed about the birds is that they never squabble about the catch. There seems to be an unwritten rule among themselves "you caught it, you eat it". Spotting a Spoonbill in the crowd was easy with the spatulate shape of their beak. While reading about them the feature that struck me was that the primary cause of their brood failure was not predation but starvation.
Not sure about this bird, but I think this is the Eurasian Coot (Warkari)
The painted stork stands out pretty tall among the lot.
Here she stands with her knees bend and that gives you an idea of the length of her beak.
A closer look at the formation of her feathers and its colours.
All these birds were pretty close to our boat and they were quite comfortable about it.
Found many Waders and Stilts among the lot.
Grey Heron stands majestically.
The Pied Bushchat had a unique call of her own.  They say that a bird shot is perfect if you can see the white dot in the eye.
All these birds were found in the backwaters of Ujani Dam (Bhima Dam). A game sanctuary is not far from this place and we were lucky enough to spot two Chinkaras (Indian Gazelle) Made a 5 minute video on it.

Monday, January 11, 2021

Pune Mandai and sketchers

It is so good to see all the greens against the morning sunlight. Had been to the main market (Mandai) in Pune at the crack of dawn.
The indoor stalls were also well lit, but trying to keep the source of light out of the frame was tricky.
What a treat for the eyes with aubergines (brinjal) of different shapes and colours.
It was also a day for the members of The Urban Sketchers (Pune) to capture the place with their painting and sketching, to show the colonial impact on Pune.
Some of them did a wonderful job of capturing the place on canvas.
One of them was using an ipad to do his paintings. He said he has downloaded a software to do it. Mayshir (in the comment below) says it is an iPad Air and the software is SketchPro by Tayasui.
When I looked through the view finder my first reaction was “the space ship is landing to beam up the vegetable vendors”
My favorite vegetables, Cauliflower and Cabbage. When ever I see them in the market, I am reminded of wifey’s instructions “Don’t buy cauliflower, there are already two in the fridge”
Catching up with the latest news while waiting for customers.
This lady’s saree goes well with the carrots and the jalopies
Here is a lady dip dying the earthen pots to convert them to black colour. I wonder what it is used for. - - (PS 12th Jan) Reproducing the comment given by Satish Deshpande given below : Hi Joe, nice trip to Mandai. This is harvesting season for many things. Sugarcane, green peas, plum (Bher) Gram (chana), rice...... There is a custom of offering these pots filled with all such things among married ladies, especially newly married, on the occasion of Makar Sankranti. That is where the pots are used. - Satish Deshpande
It is the orange season and most of the fruit stalls have a heap of oranges.
Talking of season, it is also the season of the green peas. The best time to buy fresh ones, peel them and stock in the freezer.
I didn’t see anyone sketching this boy with the bell. I had written about him in an earlier blog about the story of the bell.
The boy’s statue was installed after the tragedy in 1993 when 38 school kids lost their lives when their bus was hit by a train at an unmanned level crossing at Phursungi. Initially the boy used to ring the bell every hour, but now it is non functional but the bell and the statue still stands. Have made a short video combining both the vegetable vendors and the Urban Sketchers in action. While clicking the pictures outside Mandai, saw a bunch of cyclists zipping past. Couldn’t resist a quick pan shot of one of them.
Back home by 10.30 (without the cauliflower) - -