Sunday, December 26, 2010

Birding In North-East India (Eaglenest WLS and Nameri Tiger Reserve) Date: 26th Mar to 02nd April, 2011

Eaglenest…… bass naam hi kaafi hai…. Yes, Nature India has meticulously planned and organized bird watching trip to Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary, Arunachal Pradesh and Nameri Tiger Reserve, Assam, March-April 2011. Only limited seats (12) are available, hence please register very fast. (See details at the end).....

Please go through this trip report by one of our participants last year.

Birding in Nameri Tiger Reserve, Eastern Assam

Covering an area of apprx. 200 Sq. Kms., situated in Eastern Himalayan foothills and on the banks of Nameri river, Nameri Tiger Reserve, is one of the most scenic wildlife parks in India. It is in the eastern border of Assam in the valley and mountains of Arunachal Pradesh.

Nameri is probably only known place in India for endangered, White-winged Wood Duck, essentially a resident of the dense tropical evergreen forest. It prefers to live in inaccessible swampy areas formed by rivers, streams, creeks, etc. It has very distinctive and ghostly voice, which gives him 'Deo Huns', name in Assamese, meaning Spirit Duck. Not easy to spot, as these are extremely rare and elusive.

Nameri is home to many other bird species like Sultan Tit, Ruby-cheeked Sunbird, Pin-tailed Green Pigeon, Common Merganser, Ibis Bill, Silver-breasted Broadbill, Oriental Hobby, Crow-billed Drongo, Maroon Oriole and many more wonderful birds.. Nameri is also famous for high density of Elephants. If lucky, one can see large congregations of Whreath & Great Pied Hornbills.

The only way to go inside the park is by boat as you need to cross the river to enter the park and you know what….you can walk inside the jungle (A forest guard with gun accompanies you due to wild elephants around), a good opportunity to explore other fauna including orchid laden trees and butterflies …Moreover, the Nameri-Eco Camp that we are going to stay is renowned as an excellent place to see Oriental Hobby, Brown-Hawk Owl, Blue-bearded Bee-eaters, Forest Eagle Owl and even Capped-Langurs !!


Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary, Arunachal Pradesh

The name "Eaglenest" was derived from Indian Army's 'Red Eagle Division' which was posted in this area in 1950. The Indian 4th Infantry Division also known as 'Red Eagle Division' was an infantry division of British Indian Army. It was formed in Egypt in 1939 and was the first Indian Army division to go overseas during second world war.

Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in West Kameng District of Arunachal Pradesh, the place where Sun rises as early as 4.00am!! The Sanctuary covering an area 218 sq. kms. is neighbored by Sessa Orchid Sanctuary to the North-East and Pakke Tiger Reserve to the East. The altitude ranges extremely from 500mtrs to 3200mtrs. Although, all the birds seen here are special, there are few super specialties of Eaglenest, most prominent of them is recently discovered Bugun Liochichla.

One can see this bird around Lama camp accompanying Rusty-fronted Barwings and Bhutan Laughingthrushes….. yes, now start getting used to such bird names as we often read & see them only in books!! Other specialties are Ward’s Trogon, Beautiful Nuthatch, Cutia, Wren-babblers, Fulvettas, Rufous-necked Hornbill and Scimitar Babblers to name few. Eaglenest is famous for mix-hunting parties, in which 25-30 species of the birds can easily seen together. The bird checklist of this area is around 500 species.

We will be visiting 3 base camps at Eaglenest situated at different altitudes to get the most our of the trip.

Lama Camp(2400mtrs)
First camp site developed in Eaglenest WLS. Situated at picturesque location, this is the site around which Bugun Liochichla was discovered. The bird can be seen even on the backside of camp. Other birds seen in the area are; Beautiful Sibia, Bhutan, Chestnut-crowned, Spotted Laughingthrushes, Blue-fronted Redstart, Olive-backed Pipit, Green-tailed Sunbird, Yellow-browed and Black-spotted Yellow Tit, Rufous-winged Fulvetta etc...

Bompu Camp(1950mtrs)
Recently developed campsite. The camp site is situated among one of the most dense forest in India. Birds seen here are: Ward's Trogon, Red-tailed Minla, Yellow-throated and Brown-throated Fulvetta, Stripe-throated and Rufous-vented Yuhina, Stripe-breasted Barwing, Golden-breasted Fulvettas and many more.....

Sessni Camp(1200mtrs)

Most happening place in Eaglenest WLS for bird watching. Being at lower altitude large variety of birds are seen here. Rufous-necked and Wreathed Hornbill, Red-faced Liochichla, Rufous-backed Sibia, Beautiful Nuthatch, Scarlet and Gold-naped Finch, Slender & Coral-billed Scimitar Babbler, Greater Rufous-headed Parrotbill, White-bellied Erpornis, Black-eared Shrike Babbler, Lemon-rumped, Yellow-vented and Whistler's Warbler, Mountain Bulbul, Gray-chinned, Long-tailed and Short-billed Minivet, Scaly-breasted Wren Babbler and many more....

Along with birds, one may also see (though rarely) Arunachal Macaque, Malayan Giant Squirrel, Mithun (Gaur) and if very lucky, the Red Panda :-)

To know more check these links...

Eaglenest WLS certainly is on top of the list for any birdwatcher. Here is a chance for you to see the birds in wild, which you have so far seen only in books. An ultimate place a bird watcher can visit. Normally we count number of birds seen in a trip, here in Eaglenest, if its your 1st visit, then you count number of Lifers seen as more than 80% of the birds seen here will be Lifers for you!! Bag lifers in hundreds in single trip! Register fast.....

Cricket lover ne Tendulkar nahi dekha to kya dekha?
Bird watcher ne Eaglenest nahi dekha to kya dekha??


Date: 26th March 2011 (Saturday) mor. 10.45 am to 02nd April 2011 (Saturday) eve. 6.00 pm (travel days included)

Mode of Travel :
Mumbai - Guwahati - Mumbai (by Air/Rail on personal expenses)

Local travel in jeep from Guwahati – Nameri – Eaglenest – Nameri – Guwahati (By Nature India)

Travel Details:

From Mumbai to Guwahati & Back (To be taken care by participants themselves)

By Air:
We suggest you to book tickets for following flight;

Mumbai - Guwahati, Indigo Flight No. 6E-321, on 26/03/2011 at 09.25Hours reaching Guwahati at 14.20Hours.

Guwahati - Mumbai, Indigo Flight No. 6E-322, on 02/04/2011 at 15.30Hours reaching Mumbai at 20.10Hours.
Guwahati - Mumbai, Spicejet Flight No. SG-874, on 02/04/2011 at 14.50Hous reaching Mumbai at 20.45Hours.

There are other flights also available.... Please check the arrival & departure timing at Guwahati for to & fro flights.

Special Note: Please book your seats, on left side of the plane while going to Guwahati and on right side of the plane while coming back to Mumbai, to have clear view of the amazing Kanchanjunga ranges.

By Rail:
One can reach Guwahati by 5647 Guwahati express, but it runs only on Fridays and takes about 53 hours :-(

*Nature India will not assist in booking for air/train tickets*
Tour Itinerary:
  1. Saturday, 26th March, 2011: Pick-up at Guwahati Airport at 14.30 Hrs…..Departure in jeep for Nameri. On the way stop over to see first lifer of the trip..... Stay overnight at Nameri Eco Camp.

  2. Sunday, 27th March, 2011: Morning bird watching at Nameri Tiger Reserve with packed Breakfast.....Post lunch leave for Eaglenest....Stay at Lama Camp.

  3. Monday, 28th March 2011: Full day bird watching around Lama Camp. Stay at Lama Camp

  4. Tuesday, 29th March, 2011: Start early morning from Lama Camp…..bird watching on the way through-out the day….reach Bompu camp by evening…..Stay at Bompu

  5. Wednesday, 30th March, 2011: Bompu - Sessni - Kelong - Bompu.....Bird-watching all the way....Stay at Bompu

  6. Thursday, 31st March, 2011: Bompu - Sessni - Bompu.....Bird-watching all the way....Stay at Bompu

  7. Friday, 01st April 2011: Start early morning birding along the way... reach Nameri by evening …bird watching on the way….stay at Nameri Eco camp

  8. Saturday, 02nd April, 2011: Morning bird watching at Nameri Tiger Reserve….Leave for Guwahati after breakfast…. Reach Guwahati Airport by 14:00 Hrs
More details on the itinerary will be given to those who register.....

Trip charges : (Guwahati to Guwahati only)….

Economy Plan: Rs. 31500/-
Includes Stay in tents on twin sharing basis at Nameri Eco camps, Dormitory tent accommodation in Eaglenest (4 persons in 1 tent - sleeping bags will be provided), Local transport by Jeeps, Park entry charges, local guide charges, All meals (vegetarian food), Entry permits for Arunachal Pradesh, 3 jeeps for 14 people, Articles on Nameri & Eaglenest and bird checklist, on board mineral water and snacks………

Premium Plan: With Extra cost (Kindly check with us for charges & availability)
Includes Stay in tents on twin sharing basis at Nameri Eco camps and Eaglenest (beds with sleeping bags), Local transport by Jeeps, Park entry charges, vegetarian food, Entry permits for Arunachal Pradesh, Articles on Nameri & Eaglenest and bird checklist, on board mineral water and snacks………

This does not include any other charges and also any individual camera charges ....Individuals will have to pay additional charges if any to the forest dept. as per the rules.

Please note: Since this is a remote location, the facilities are basic. However the stay is very clean and food is very good.

Stay Arrangements

Nameri Eco-camp, Nameri

Lama Camp, Eaglenest WLS

PS: Unfortunately, if the flight from Guwahati to Mumbai is cancelled due to bad weather or for any other reasons, Nature India will not to be responsible for making stay arrangements. Although, Nature India will assist for hotel bookings.

Registration: You can register by sending a confirmatory mail to and by paying a non refundable Advance of Rs.12000/- after getting a registration mail from us..... (The seats will only be confirmed after receiving the advance amount) …..the remaining amount will be collected later in 3 phases as mentioned below.......Please Register at the earliest as only 12 seats are available.

Payment terms:
Phase 1 - Rs. 12000/- as non-refundable Advance to be paid immediately, to confirm the participation. We need to forward this as an advance for logistics & to block our seats.
Phase 2 - Rs. 12000/- by 28th Feb' 2011
Phase 3 - Balance amount to be paid before 15th March 2011.

Resource Persons:Mr.Adesh Shivkar & Mr.Mandar Khadilkar & Local Expert

Mode of Payment: You can either
  1. Transfer non-refundable advance amount of Rs. 12000/- directly to the HDFC A/c : (please call Adesh @ 9869071091 for A/c no.) .... please mention your name, date and other details….
  2. Courier a cheque of Rs.12000/- to the following address and forward the details.
Name: Mr.Adesh Shivkar
Address: D-8, The Adi Janata Society, Behind HP Petrolpump, Opp. Hotel Shangrilla, Sion (East), Mumbai-400022

Please Note:
  1. Once registered, the advance amount of Rs. 12000/- (Phase 1) is strictly non-refunadable
  2. Alcohol & Smoking is strictly prohibited on Nature India Tours
  3. This is primarily a Bird-watching trip
  4. Weather conditions: Weather in North-East is un-predictable and
    Nature India
    will not be responsible for any days lost due to bad weather.
Please revert on ID, in case you need any clarification.

For any other queries we are available on 9869071091 / 9820455713(Adesh) or 9967518665 (Mandar) or sign up on to know more about Nature India.

Hope to see you for this wonderful trip

Thanks for your patience.

Warm Regards,

Adesh Shivkar & Mandar Khadilkar
Nature India
Appreciate, Respect & Conserve

Friday, December 10, 2010

JAMNAGAR - Effortless Birding Experience (19th to 24th Feb, 2011)

Date: 19th to 24th Feb'11 (travel days included). The bookings for Jamnagar / Khijadia / Narara bird-watching trip are on… your seats now, as very few seats are available due to some already booked seats (see the details at the end)..... Birdwatch in one of the most Bird-rich areas with Nature India...where thousands of birds can be seen at ease...... This trip is Strongly recommended to those who are New to Birding and for Photographers :-) ........... Please See complete details (Iterinary, Charges etc) at the end of this Blog.

JAMNAGAR - Effortless Birding Experience

Jamnagar the Jewel of Kathiawar, is on the coast of "Gulf of Kutch" in the state of Gujarat, India. It has unspoilt Islands & Beaches, Hills, Temples, Palaces, Forest, Fantastic Bird life in the Bird & Marine Sanctuaries and Fascinating Corals along the coast…..

Jamnagar is the oldest city in Saurashtra. This city was also known as "Halar" in olden days, later it came to known as "Nawanagar". Modern Jamnagar city was built in 1920 AD by Maharaja Shri Ranjitsinhji. The city has army, navy and air force installation as it has strategic geographical location. In last few years Jamnagar has emerged as a Petro Giant. India's largest private company Reliance has established the world's largest grass root level refinery near Jamnagar, Essar Oil too has a refinery in Jamnagar district.

Dotted by numerous water bodies and the hospitable people around, Jamnagar is well-known for its incredible birdlife that is so easy to spot and observe that it wont be an exaggeration if the birding in Jamnagar area is termed as "Effortless Birding"....And hence this region is also a favorite haunt of Bird photographers. As this bird heaven is strategically located on the flyway of the migratory route, in winter it turns into a prime area for the birds and the bird-watchers as well.

Several migratory birds make Jamnagar their home during the winter months. Bird watchers flock to different places like the Sanctuaries, Coastal regions, Salt pans, rivers & water reservoirs of Jamnagar. The checklist shows more than 400 species.... Thanks to the varied habitat…....

Places like Khijadiya Bird Sanctuary, Lakota Lake right in the heart of the city, Narara beach, Bedi Bunder and the water reservoirs surrounding the town offer excellent place to view & photograph birds. Almost every water body in and around the town is dotted by remarkable species of birds which are now accustomed to the friendly neighborhood.

If you are arriving in Jamnagar by train, especially in winter, you are sure to see wonderful birds right near the station, as you step down from the train.

Please go through some of these links to know more about birding in Jamnagar.

India announces an exclusive and effortless bird-watching trip to this wonderland from 19th Feb to 23th Feb, 2011…. The details are given at the end. Amongst the places that we intend to cover are Khijadiya Bird Sanctuary, Narara beach, Lakhota Lake, Charakla salt pans & Bedi Bunder Area.

Just less than an hour’s drive from the town (12 kms) is a renowned Khijadia Bird Sanctuary which many city dwellers are unaware of.

This protected area packs in an incredible diversity of ecosystems into the relatively small area of 6 The sanctuary, created over the 1920s and '30s, is formed from two man-made dykes that separate fresh water from sea water, creating the opportunity to simultaneously observe species that belong to each ecosystem, and some that share both.

Along with the marine and fresh water habitats, there are also marshy lands, mangroves, Prosopis areas, mudflats, salt pans, creeks, forest scrub, sandy beaches, and even farmlands bordering the area. This provides a haven for more than 220 species of resident and migratory birds, including globally threatened species such as Dalmatian pelican, Asian open bill stork, Black-necked stork, Darter, Black-headed ibis, Eurasian spoonbill, and Indian skimmer, and provides birdwatchers with a delightful chance to sight rare birds in large numbers.

Watching the arrival of the Cranes during sunset for roosting is a fantastic experience. You can spot thousands of wintering Common and Demoiselle cranes, and other water birds includingFlamingos, Pelicans, Gulls, Ducks, Storks, Waders, Geese and the endangered Indian Skimmers. The Black-necked stork nesting can also be seen here. Method of Birdwatching is to walk along the dam. It is a refreshing change from riding in jeeps.


Lakhota Lake is a smallish waterbody in the middle of Jamnagar with the Lakhota Palace as its center. Next to Lakhota lake there are smaller lakes. This area is quite a revelation for any birdwatcher. You may have never seen so many birds inside a busy city before!

Walking in the early mornings especially in the winter months & sitting under the beautiful domes allows you to experience nature with the birds... Just sit along the periphery wall of the lake and you can easily watch several species of ducks, Pelicans, Gulls, Terns etc at close quarters. More than 75 species of birds (both migratory and resident) have been recorded from this smallish lake making it one of the most productive “Lake” in the heart of a busy city anywhere in India…..

NARARA CORAL BEACH (Marine National park)

This beach is a part of Marine National Park which is easily accessible by road. One just has to drive down to Narara Edge about 60 kms from Jamnagar. Here one should reach just before the tide starts, when the tide comes in, it brings the birds closer to land, making it easier for the bird watchers to watch from quite close.
Narara beach is acclaimed as one of the only place in India where one can watch the rare Crab Plovers in large numbers and a variety of waders at close range.

It is one of the cleanest beach where live corals still exist and easy to explore on foot. As you walk in shallow waters during the low tide, you are often surrounded by Star fish, Sea cucumbers, Brain corals, Crabs, Sponges, Sea anemones etc…..walking along and exploring the corals along with birding is a unique experience indeed.


Dhichda is also an excellent birding area, with lots of water bodies. Dhichda can be reached by taking a derour after the village of Bedi from the road turning left before the entry road of Bedi Port.
The entire stretch offers excellent birding from roadside....another effortless experience. Here the Lesser and Greater flamingos can be seen at close qaurters.

CHARAKLA Salt-pans
Another bird-full location, slightly away from Jamnagar. Charakla is about 120kms from Jamnagar. The place in known for sightings of Red-necked Phalarope, Black-necked Grebe, Flamingos along with many other water birds.

Charakla salt-pans have a thin pink film on their surface — a closer inspection reveals thousands of flamingos; the greater and the lesser flamingos have found a haven here. As many as 121 species of birds, migratory and resident, have been recorded at the Charakla salt -pans.


Date: 19th Feb 2011 eve. 18:20 pm to 24th Feb 2011 mor. 05.40 am (travel days included)

Mode of Travel: Train uptil Jamnagar and local travel by Jeeps.

Overnight train travel can be booked from Mumbai..... however since it is a busy sector, the train bookings should be done soon to get the desired train and class .... there are just a couple of trains available for Jamnagar from Mumbai....Nature India can ASSIST in bookings if required.

Rough Tour Itinerary:

1) Saturday 19th Feb, 2011: Departure from Mumbai by Saurashtra Janata Express train at 18:20 pm

2) Sunday 20th Feb, 2011: Arrive at Jamnagar at 09:35 - Checkin hotel & Refresh / Breakfast (really fast) – Visit Lakhota Lake for a relaxing birding – Lunch – Visit Dhichda Area – Return - Revision & Discussion of day's sightings – Dinner and stay at Jamnagar.

3) Monday 21st Feb, 2011: Full day Birdwatching in Khijadia WLS – Lunch - Visit Ranjitsagar Dam – Return - Revision & Discussion of day's sightings – Dinner and stay at Jamnagar.

4) Tuesday 22nd Feb, 2011:Early morning Bird-watching at Charakla Salt-pan - Lunch - Visit Narara beach for Corals and sighting Crab Plovers, Oysterctachers and Other waders.

5) Wednesday 23rd Feb, 2011: Morn. Birding at Bedi Bunder and INS Valsura area - early lunch - checkout and board train back to Mumbai by Saurashtra Janata Express at 13:40

6) Thursday 24th Feb, 2011: Reach Mumbai early morning at 05:40 am

More details on the iterinary will be given to those who register.....

Trip charges: Rs./- (Jamnagar to Jamnagar)....

Includes Stay in Hotel at Jamnagar on a twin sharing basis in non-A/C rooms, Local transport by Jeeps or Tempo traveller, Park entry charges, Local guide charges, Delicious Vegetarian food, Articles on Khijadia and Jamnagar Birding, Bird checklist, on board unlimited mineral water and snacks……

This does not include train travel from Mumbai to Jamnagar & Back or any other charges and also any individual camera charges ....Individuals will have to pay additional charges if any to the forest dept. as per the rules. A/c rooms can be made available on request and by paying additional charges (Apprx. 2000/- extra)

Registration: You can register by sending a confirmatory mail to and by paying a non refundable Advance of Rs.3000/- only after getting a registration mail from us (The seats will only be confirmed after receiving the advance amount) …..the remaining amount will be collected in train on the day of travel.......

Please Register soon to get the confirmed train bookings and the desired class of travel. We can assist you for train bookings.

Resource Persons: Mr.Kunal Joshi (Local expert) Mr.Adesh Shivkar & Mr.Mandar Khadilkar

Mode of Payment: You can either

1) Transfer the advance money directly to my HDFC A/c : (please call Mandar @ 9930318665 / 9967518665 for A/c no.) .... please mention your name, date and other details….OR
2) Courier a cheque of Rs.3000/- to the following address
Name: Mr. Mandar Khadilkar
Address: B/702, Neha Apartments, Ashish Complex, CS Cross Road No.4, Dahisar (East), Mumbai-400068

Please Note:
1) Once registered, the advance amount of Rs. 3000/- is strictly non-refunadable
2) Alcohol & Smoking is strictly prohibited on Nature India Tours
3) Please read carefully Nature India Policies:

Please contact us, in case you need any clarification …..

For any other queries we are available on 9967518665/9930318665 (Mandar) or 9869071091 / 9820455713 (Adesh) or

Also sign up on to get regular updates on our trips, photos & articles....

Hope to see you for this wonderful trip !!

Thanks for your patience.

Warm Regards,

Adesh Shivkar & Mandar Khadilkar
Nature India
Appreciate, Respect & Conserve

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