Sunday, December 18, 2011


Started 6:30am from Kothrud, Pune, with my friend Ritesh and his wife, for Kavdi the first destination.
Reached Kavdi by 7:15am. Bank Myna at the village was the first sightings.
At the temple just near the river there were house sparrows and a yellow eyed babbler gave good views.

Yellow Eyed Babbler

House Sparrow
House Sparrow
At the river the calls of river tern fighting over something welcomed us.

Also Brahminy shelducks were also flying around.
Brahminy Shelduck
There was a huge flock terns in the middle of the river.

On the right side of the bridge there were wood sandpipers, common sandpiper and a common snipe near the shore.

Wood Sandpiper
There were lot of Little Grebes.

Little Grebe
After doing some photography of these on the right side came on to the bridge and there was a White Throated Kingfisher sitting beautifully on a small stick.

White Throated Kingfisher
While I was photographing it sitting on the bridge there was a yellow wagtail and paddy field pipit in the ground below and a pied kingfisher hovering above searching for food.

Pied Kingfisher

Pied Kingfisher
In the water there were lot of ducks mainly northers shoveller and Common teal.

Common Teal (Female)

Jungle Crow

Wood Sandpiper
As i was sitting on the shore clicking the wood sandpipers and little ringed plovers i could see on an island in front a Common Snipe and Small Pratincole, one of the birds on top of my list for some time.

Common Snipe
Small Pratincole
Small Pratincole

Small Pratincole
From here we went to the Bhuleshwar via Uralikanchan. We had some heavy brunch at Urali.
The food was very tasty :)

We were an hour late to start from Urali as we had tyre puncture at Kavdi and it was needed to attend to it before we take it on a not so very good road with no guarantee of shops in between.

So we were on this barren road at around 12noon. Not a very good time for birding and so we did not spot any exciting birding activity.
Near the temple we saw a bay backed shrike, black drongo and a booted eagle.
Bay Backed Shrike

Booted Eagle
Bhuleshwar temple was built in 1230 AD. It is built in block basalt rock not the same found around which is brown rock.
The carvings are beautiful but many have been destroyed by attackers. The specialty is the carvings of gods in women attire (see pic below).
Bhuleshwar Temple

A dog relaxing in the temple

View from Bhuleshwar Temple

A Sadhu just outside the Temple

Carvings inside the Temple

Rock pillars supporting the Temple

Ganapati, Shiv and Karthikeyan in women attires

Nandi in front of the gabhara

Bhuleshwar Temple
There was lot of activity on a peepal tree in the campus of the temple. Small minivets, crimson breasted barbet, oriental white eye, a warbler and last but not least lesser white throat.

We left from the temple after clicking some pics inside and outside at around 2pm.
Just near the bottom of the hillock on which the temple stands we saw a white eyed buzzard sitting elegantly at the top of a tree. It gave us short glimpse and then flew on a tree behind.
We decided to go behind walking on the bunds of the fields.

White Eyed Buzzard's back of the head

White Eyed Buzzard
At the back of the fields was a completely different world. We saw many brahminy mynas flying. Then came 3 hoppoes and sat on a tree in front of us. As we were clicking hoppoes came samll minivets (2pairs) on the same tree. It gave us fantastic views for a long time.
Small Minivet (Female)

Small Minivet (Male)
We saw some activity on the fields and saw a grey necked bunting on a wire over the field.
Sensing that it could be bunting we decided to explore but they turned out to be baya weavers but in big flock of around 10-15.
Just then came a black shouldered kite and hovered just above us.
Black Shouldered Kite hovering
After around 20-25 minutes we started towards Sasvad to proceed towards Dive ghat.
On the way got usual sightings of yellow wattled lapwing and Common Kestrel.

Yellow Wattled Lapwing

Common Kestrel

Common Kestrel
As we reached Dive ghat after tea and a good tasting bhel in sasvad it had turned into beautiful golden light of the evening.
We started seeing activity along the narrow road. There were common stonechat, pied buschat and red vented bulbul.

Red Vented Bulbul
As we were deciding which area to explore we saw a raptor flying high in the sky.
It was a short toed snake eagle

Short-Toed Snake Eagle
There were many larks coming down for roosting. Also saw an harrier.

Indian Robin

Syke's Crested Lark
The surprise before we left Dive ghat was a India Grey Hornbill which came out of nowhere and went the same way
Indian Grey Hornbill
Indian Grey Hornbill

We got down from Dive ghat and reached pune station by around 6:15pm and took Shivneri back to Mumbai.
Another wonderful day of birding in Pune came to an end!!

To view more pics visit the following album


Unknown said...

Excellent photography! Thanks for sharing! I live in Pune. Wanted to go to Bhuleshwar. what route should I take and what is the best season to visit?


Alok Bhave said...

Thanks for the comments.
Best way to go to Bhuleshwar temple is to take Pune-Solapur road and take a right from yevat a little after uruli kanchan. If you are interested also in birding then 2 options 1) Take right from uruli kanchan and then take a left from vaghapur or 2) Take right just after hadapsar on the sasvad pune road and then a left at sasvad on sasvad bhuleshwar road.
Last option is best for birding in winter time mainly November till March