Bird Watching at Palakkad: Photologue

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I share here some of my best photographs from the last season as a consolation for the loss of my ‘Scorp’ which had met with an accident and totaled, some four months ago. All the images being shared here were taken with the Scorp, my lone companion during my humble local birding trails.
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I realize how close he was to me and my family and what an influence he had on our lives. Destiny it is. One of us had to leave and it was him who did the ultimate sacrifice at the end, pulling all of us miraculously out of the jaws of death. I am at a loss of words and the Scorp will continue to remain irreplaceable in our hearts for the rest of our lives !!
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I had gotten my vacation extended last year with the arrival of a new member in the family. Palakkad being my native, ended up spending most part of the vacation in there. Every time I woke up early and heard birds calling, that passionate appetite chased me out of the bedroom instantly. Picks up the photo gear, crank starts the ‘Scorp’ and takes off the portico – almost became a routine. It wasn’t the destination but the lazy drive through those remote and quiet village/hill roads, those beautiful paddy fields – all meant fresh air and some great birding opportunities.

The returning of Baya Weavers to the rice fields of Palakkad:
There have been concerns of huge drop in the numbers of Baya Weavers due to the decline in Paddy field cultivation and reduced south-west monsoon in Palakkad. But looked like they are back in large numbers as I could always spot them during all my outings. The new developments in agricultural farming might have brought them back to this region.
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Re: Bird Watching at Palakkad- Photologue

Birds in Action:

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The cycle of rice is about 5-6 months I guess. I was fortunate to witness various stages of it last year. A ten minute drive from home takes me to Mankara-Kottayi stretch, on either side of which is the beautiful rice fields. It was great fun watching, alongside birding, the process like preparing the field, dropping the seed etc. Like the moment for harvest, the moment of a photograph, too is very critical.

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As I was closely watching a Black Kite, this Indian Roller came right in to my radar. Lucky that I could get the focus locked on this beauty as it was flying past me in no time. Yes, its a keeper ! I do see almost every time these blue jays perched along the wires and am yet to get a perfect shot with the bird on a natural perch.In flight the bright blue, turquoise and that lovely indigo are clearly visible.
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I was watching this Brahminy Kite for some time. Capturing these bird of prey gets a bit challenging if you want to shoot them while in interesting actions. Their descend can be very quick at times and tracking the bird through out its flight to get that special moment demands a lot of patience.
 
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Re: Bird Watching at Palakkad- Photologue

It was my wifey who spotted this gorgeous bird of prey, the Crested Hawk Eagle high up on a tree in the neighborhood. A heavy crop from a long shot.
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I had a very close encounter with this Crested serpent eagle one afternoon. Again taken from my Scorpio which quietly drove close enough. Locked the focus first on the bird perched on a short tree. As I opened the window poking the lens out, the eagle took off but got a couple of images before it vanished in to the nearby jungle.
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Re: Bird Watching at Palakkad- Photologue

Full wing span and show off !
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A Green Bee eater returning after a kill. Lots of these around and if one is patient enough and know their behaviors, you can easily come back home with some keepers. That's all for now and hope you enjoyed going through the images.

A parting shot !
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Awesome shots I must say! Some of the best I have ever seen. What gears do you use? Could you please share some tips for bird photography?

OT: Someone please help me with the name of this bird:
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This one was shot near my home with a bridge cam.

Thanks in advance,
Harikrishnan
 
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Awesome photos Manoj.. Condolences on what happened with your Scorpio and happy that you guys are safe. Keep photologging
Thanks vishnu. Life has to go on and my latest possession -Endy- is doing a fantastic job as well. Covered some 5000 km in about a month already. No birding at all these days, hence no photologging planned here at the moment. If interested in more of my images, just google 'manojodungat' [:)]

Awesome shots I must say! Some of the best I have ever seen. What gears do you use? Could you please share some tips for bird photography?
Thanks Harikrishnan. Used Nikon D810 + Nikon 200-500 f5.6 for the posted images.
OT: Someone please help me with the name of this bird:
View attachment 228665
This one was shot near my home with a bridge cam.

Thanks in advance,
Harikrishnan
Looks like a Jungle Myna. Nice shot !
 
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Thanks Harikrishnan. Used Nikon D810 + Nikon 200-500 f5.6 for the posted images.

Looks like a Jungle Myna. Nice shot !
Thanks sir! Where excatly do you live in Palakkad? Have been to the place 4-5 times. Love the scenary [:)] What gear is good for bird photography under Rs.50000 (including body and lens)?
 
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Thanks sir! Where excatly do you live in Palakkad? Have been to the place 4-5 times. Love the scenary [:)] What gear is good for bird photography under Rs.50000 (including body and lens)?
Sorry for the late response, haven't been around. Rs.50k would be tight for anything serious. You can try good used D7100/D7200 + any 150-600 f/6.3 on sites like JJMPH or buy&sell groups on facebook.
Me, taking a long break these days from birding/wildlife. Just some portraits of my little one. Have one 85/1.4, such a lovely combo for portraits.

Meanwhile, came in a new member in the family, replacing the trusted Scorp.
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Out goes for the kill - a green bee eater taking off !
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Rs.50k would be tight for anything serious. You can try good used D7100/D7200 + any 150-600 f/6.3 on sites like JJMPH or buy&sell groups on facebook.
Actually I missed your post. Was not so keen on buying used. Bought Nikon D5300+ 18-55mm & 70-300mm kit. Thanks BTW [:)]

Regards,
Harikrishnan
 
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