Winters in North are in full swing and this season also reminds us of time when birds from different parts of the world come to different wetlands of India. Bird migration is the regular seasonal movement of different types of birds along flyway between breeding and wintering grounds. Migration of these birds is a very interesting phenomenon wherein flight length & height of each bird is dependent on size & texture of wings. Accordingly different types of birds settle down in different wetlands which come on their way. This Photo Journey shares some photographs of Migratory Birds of North India and details on this phenomenon of Migration for a particular duration of year.
North India has various wetlands where thousands and lacs of birds come during winters & go back to their native lands by March. This migration starts in the month of November with few exceptions.
Migration timtings are primarily controlled by changes in day length, which is also associated with temperature in different parts of the country. Migrating birds navigate using celestial cues from the sun and stars, the earth's magnetic field and the winds favorable to their wings. The path, distance & final destination is derived by starting point, the air flow and power of wings to fly at a particular height against gravity. I was fortunate enough to attend a workshop on Bird Migration by National Conservation Team of Himachal State. Lot of migration happens because of genetic behaviors as well.
Northern States of India see lot of Migratory Birds during Winters. Be is Himachal, Punjab, Harayana, Rajasthan, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttrakhand, Uttar Pradesh or Gujrat etc. There are various places around Delhi as well, where Migratory Birds can be seen. This season is very interesting for Photography enthusiasts to spend their weekends in better way.
Okhala Bird Sactuary, Asola, Sultanpur, Bharatpur, Hauz Khas Village Lake and various other wetlands around Greater Noida, Gaziabad & Gurgaon offer nice landing stations of Migratory Birds. I not been to many of these locations and hope to visit few of them during this season. And when you are out in these wetlands, it's not only about migratory birds but you also see lot of resident birds having great time with these migratory species.
While going out to meet these Birds, don't forget to take your camera & binoculars with appropriate lenses. Preferably you should have lens with more than 400mm. Image Stabilization is again a very useful thing when it comes to Bird photography. While shooting photographs of birds, ensure that you target to click photographs in direct sunlight. It helps getting faster shutter-speed and hence good opportunities to capture birds in action.
Having a mono-pod handy with you can be very useful. Basically you may want to wait for right time to click a particular bird and hence keeping hands still can be biggest challenge, Carrying a Tripod can be tiresome, so mono-pod becomes better option. And while around birds, make sure that you don't do lot of movement. And when it comes to dressing, prefer dull colored clothes, preferably black. And specifically avoid bright shaded clothes. You may want to set your camera is continuous mode so that you get sharp images of birds in action.
If possible and you have high focal length lens try to focus on eyes of birds because most of the times viewers look at the eyes first and other advantage is that you get appropriate focus around important parts of bird-body.
Photographs shared in this post are not good examples of Bird Photographs. Most of these are shot with very low focal-length point-n-shoot cameras and then cropped.
During Bird Photography you will be able to appreciate auto-focus capabilities of your lenses in better way.
Some of the birding places in various parts of Himachal Pradesh state are - Great Himalayan National Park, Kasauli, Dharamshala, Kangra, Majhat Harsang, Pong Dam and Manali. But whenever you are in other parts of Himachal Pradesh, make a point to have a walk early in morning and keep closer watch on sounds around you. Some of the popular destinations for birding in Harayana are considered - Basai, Bhindawas, Bhor Saiyadan, Drain No 8 , Kalesar, Mohamedabad Marsh, Morni Hills, Naharh Santuary , Panipat Refinery, Sultanpur and West Yamuna Canal.
Main places to explore for birding in rajasthan are - Bharatpur, Desert National Park, Sariska, Ranthambore, Sambhar Lake, Kota, Mt Abu, Samode and Bund Baretha.
Uttrakhand has some of the very popular birding destinations - Corbett, Dehradun, Kedarnath, Nandadevi, New Forest, Rajaji, Pangot, Valley of Flowers, Upper Kuamon, Binsar, Asan Barrage, Sitlakhet and Kaladhungi. Gujrat has Little Rann, Hingolgadh, Narayan Sarovar, Gir and Wild Ass.
When I started finding out appropriate details about places in delhi to see Migratory birds, I was surprised to find out some very interesting details. Delhi, the capital city of India as a birding venue has a remarkable number of interesting sites. In spite of the high population density, there is a surprising number of green open spaces in the city. There are various resident birds in the city and has some interesting summer visitors that move north out of the peninsula to breed before and during the summer monsoon. Winter visitors are far more than what we see in summers. Delhi is well positioned near Yamuna river.
Okhala Bird Sanctuary around Yamuna river and its associated wetlands have the most productive places with a bird list of over 330 species. During peak time over 150 species in a day is easily possible. This region has huge duck and goose flocks of 15+ species including Bar-headed and Grey-lag Goose, Ruddy and Common Shelduck, Ferruginous Duck and Red-crested Pochard. More details can be checked at http://www.theurbanbirder.com/urban-birding/delhi/
Here we wish you a great Birding season !!!