Sunday, July 12, 2009

Backwaters at Qurum Park

Tucked away a few hundred metres behind the popular Qurum Park is this untouched patch of about 200meters of stagnant water , fed by high tide of the Arabian sea, is an oasis of life , a stone throw distance from human habitation. This area shares a boundry with an ampitheatre.
We met another birder there who showed us his prized captured of a Bee-Eater,we were pleasantly surprised by the number of wild visitors we saw.While one of us photographed them the other was with Diya. If she was not watching the dragonflies she was throwing pebbles into the water and as they splashed she smiled.

Great Cormorant.
A large aquatic bird found mainly in warmer and tropical locations, mostly on the sea but at times on inland waters .Cormorants have a heavy body, generally dark plumage and their eyes are green.It is one of the few birds which can move its eyes, which assists in hunting.The feet are webbed, the bill is long with the upper mandible terminally hooked.
Being excellent swimmers, Cormorants chase fish underwater.After fishing, cormorants go ashore, and are frequently seen holding their wings out in the sun.

They are characterised by a long slender downcurved bill and mainly brown plumage brown and long legs.They feed on mud or very soft ground, searching for worms and other invertebrates with their long bills. They will also take crabs and similar items.

Black-winged Stilt.
This is a widely distibuted very long-legged wader in the avocet and stilt family.They have long pink legs, a long thin black bill and are blackish above and white below, with a white head and neck with a varying amount of black. Males have a black back, often with greenish gloss. Females' backs have a brown hue, contrasting with the black remiges.
Immature birds are grey instead of black and have a markedly sandy hue on the wings, with light feather fringes appearing as a whitish line in flight.

Red-wattled Lapwing.
They are large waders,with a red fleshy wattle in front of each eye, black-tipped red bill, and long yellow legs.Males and females are similar in plumage but males have a 5% longer wing and tend to have a longer carpal spur.It usually keeps in pairs or trios in well-watered open country, ploughed fields, grazing land, and margins and dry beds of tanks and puddles.
Its striking appearance is supplemented by its noisy nature, with a loud and scolding did-he-do-it call.

Indian Roller.
They are found in open grassland and light forest areas.The crown and vent are blue. In flight the primaries and secondaries show bright shades of blue. It is known for the aerobatic displays of the male during the breeding season. Males and females are however not readily distinguishable.

As the name suggests, Bee-Eaters predominantly eat flying insects, especially bees and wasps, which are caught in the air by sallies from an open perch.They are characterised by richly coloured plumage, slender bodies, and usually elongated central tail feathers. All are colorful and have long downturned bills and pointed wings, which give them a swallow-like appearance when seen from afar.

Other commom visitors here are:
Red-vented Bulbul

Yellow-vented Bulbul

White-cheeked Bulbul

Night Herons.

Greater Flamingos.

While the photography of wild life is in session we take turns to entertain Diya.

Finally a sunset.


  1. What a great day you had! The photos are terrific. The night heron heading feet first for the water is stunning. Thanks for posting.


  2. What a great post, and very informative.
    Superb pictures, especially the flying Red-wattled Lapwing. Love it. And so much in a small area.

  3. WOW, These are stunning, what a wonderful day out you all had. We were just looking at Cormorants in Monterey, CA the other week and we read a notice board at the sight that said that they do not have waterproof feathers, so after diving for fish, they must dry off their feathers in the sun. How cool is that. happy days, Kathy.

  4. Splendid birds - what colourful characters they are - and such excellent photographs. Great lighting. Especially nice composition for the Indian Roller.

  5. ops that was meant to read site not sight :-)

  6. Wow you captured some beautiful pictures. I love to visit your blog cause I know I'm always going to see something I have never seen. Thanks for showing us these magnificent birds.

    That little Diya is adorable!

  7. A very beautiful collection of photographs you have here. : )

  8. Hi There, We're home after a wonderful weekend in the gorgeous North Carolina mountains. I'll post in the morning.

    Great set of photos, Shantana. You have some gorgeous birds. Love the Cormorants.

    Hope you had a great weekend.

  9. Wilma,glad you liked the post.When we found this spot we were all so excited, so full of wildlife!

    Keith,thanks.The Red-wattled Lapwing is so noisy.Diya is scared of the noise it makes and Arunava says it's too loud and doesn't like to photograp them:)

    Kathy,Cormorants are great swimmers and just disappear underwater for a while and when you spot them next they are in another place.It's nice to see them dry their wings:)

    Rob,thanks.The Indian Roller is a beauty when it spreads it's wings.Till date we have not got a satisfying shot of it with with wings spread displaying its beautiful colours.

    Susie,thanks for your kind words.At least Diya is also interested in nature so leaves us to photograph.Otherwise it would have been difficult.

    Steve,thanks.Much appreciated.

    Betsy,thanks.This area is really full of life and variety.waiting for your posts.

  10. Oh wow!! I wish I could join you! Sounds like (bird) paradise. And so may kinds of bulbul too! Here we only have the red-vented one. LOVED all the shots...this'll be a good reference point for me to identify birds.

    You might know about Jia-Bharali in winter. It's a birder's delight! This is just btw.

    Cute picture of Diya. arun looks as though he's had more than his share of entertaning!:)

  11. Wow! What a wonderful variety of birds! I am drawn to the very colorful Indian Roller and the exotic-looking bee eater! Thanks so much for sharing these wonderful shots!...Debbie

  12. Oh my ... what a fantastic post. I love the curve to the Curlew's beak ... amazing. And the sunset photo is just stunning.

  13. What a fabulous selection of birds. It looks like a great place to go back to many times.

  14. Superb selection of photographs

  15. What amazing pictures! Thank you so much for sharing!

  16. awesome! we used to have a pet curlew at home when we were little. and it used to chase my mum all around the garden all the time. your pictures reminded me of that :)

  17. What a great blog I have just come across. What a great place and photographs. Jackie

  18. Love your Blog,superb bird photography.

  19. A lovely place with beautiful birds, what wonderful education for little Diya. I loved the Bulbuls and the vividly coloured Bee-Eater.

  20. Thanks for his comments, good sequence.

  21. What a wonderful post and so informative. Great pictures too. What a variety of birds you get in your part of the world and all so colourful.

    I'm really enjoying your post as I sit here typing in the pouring rain!!

  22. Kanak, would love to have you here.We are still learing about birds.Long way to go.We are planning on a trip home in winters so maybe we can visit Jia-Bharali.
    Diya does keep Arun busy.Good for me:)

    Debbie, thanks and the Indian Rollers are a beauty.

    Olivia, thanks for your comments.Much appreciated.

    Jenny,indeed we are regular visitors there now:)

    Sam thanks.

    BunnyKissd,Jackie thanks for dropping by and glad you liked it.Hope to see you again.

    Kamana,the Curlews are fasinating birds and glad we reminded you of happy days.

    John,thanks a ton.

    Jan,So far Diya likes to be outdoors with nature.Hopefully she will reamin this way when she grows up:)The Bee-eater is a beautiful bird.

    Juan, thanks.

    Tricia,thanks.Rains..we miss it here.We hardly see rains.Only since we started blogging we have noticed all these

  23. Oh my gosh,

    these are very special photos, well done! We have many of the same birds here in our salt water marsh. And some, like the roller and bee eater i saw in Africa. The roller there is called the Lilac Breasted and there were at least three different types of Bee Eaters.
    Stunning sunset shot also.

    Thank you for sharing