A day spent Bird Racing

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Bird race is an annual event , where a number of Aarohi members participate to see most number of unique bird species in a single day of 12 hours. For people coming from campus that means extra cooking the previous day, starting at 4am from campus, driving about 120km and reaching back at 11pm.

You may call it tiring, but considering some birds migrate thousands of kilometers in just few days – this is insignificant.

Here is a compilation of sharings by the bird watching team this year (20Jan).

There so much magic in the energy created in the bird race. I enjoy watching birds but don’t do it seriously but bird race is when I really get into it. I am fortunate to have exposure watching birds since a kid and that bring to me the joy of watching birds.

Here is what we all liked:

I liked the fact that we travel to a different birding spot this time and because of that I was able to spot a lot of new bird that I usually don’t get to see.

I liked going to Jakur Lake and seeing the wetland birds.

Looking at the birds and the colours of the bird. everything about the day I liked.

Walking in the wooded IISc campus listening bird calls and loads of information about birds from the experts. And, yes, the tamarinds!

I liked the zoomed in image of the bird with an activity. eg: taking a dip in the water, eating the prey, pruning. It was like transported to their world.

Being a first-time experience, taking a closer look at the variety and diversity of birds (physical, behaviour, diet, chirping etc etc) was by itself an amazing experience.

I liked walking around looking at the birds and the trees and plants especially the velvet seed tree and the yellow silk cotton tree, I also like the tamarind that we had.

I didn’t expect myself to such lovely birds, the trip was much better than I expected it to be.

And what we did not like:

I guess I like watching the bird while walking and not part where we sat down and were waiting for the birds and staying at the same place for a long time, and sometimes we were in a hurry like in the lake so I felt we could have spent a little more time there.

I didn’t enjoy the walk through the marketplace while going to Jakur Lake.

I was confused a lot, and being unable to remember names of birds…

I did not like that we had to wait long for the lunch.

There really nothing I did not like. The lots of walking, average canteen food and lots of waiting in bus stand were all part of the experience.

The birds that we liked seeing:

Asian Paradise Flycatcher, Golden oriole, Malabar whistling thrush (!), Magpie robin, Coppersmith Barbet, Alexandrine Parakeet, Venditor Flycatcher, Greenish Warbler, Sulphur-bellied Warbler, Eurasian Coot, Oriental Magpie Robin, Booted eagle, Black hooded oriole and Painted stock.

I really enjoyed seeing birds like Parakeet, common myna, bulbul, Brahminy Kite, Black Kite, spotted dove, spot billed duck, Drongo, Coppersmith Barbet

I enjoyed sitting silently and watching the bulbul’s and starling’s have a bath in the bird bath. I liked watching the water birds because its more easier to watch them and identify them as they are not jumping branch to branch. I really like that we are a green team and making sure we care for the planet.

And here are some plans till the next bird race in Jan 2020:

A group of us have already started bird watching in the morning and then reading on birds in the evening. For me I would like to sketch the birds and also photograph them.

Keep going to bird race and watch birds in my home and Aarohi and other places.

Inspired by Shubha, Chandu and all of you, I have started turning my evening walks into bird watching walks. I plan to continue it and also participate in other bird watching events.

I take my time out in listening to different birds chirping. I want to learn to identify them by their sounds.

pend a few minutes everyday bird-watching, be part of group bird-watching, watching a couple of videos every week, put up bird-baths, bird boxes at home.

I would like to id birds when I hear them or see them to improve my id skills.

I want to explore more of bird watching at campus and I am doing once a week.

I will go see birds ones in a week and keep track of it

I am taking this ahead by enjoying birds around me everyday though not really getting too much in identifying them. I would love to be apart of group birding trips because that’s what gives me energy.

Will I be there till in Bird Race 2020:

I would love to come for bird race next year because it’s fun and it’s also good exposure and I would like to know more on it, because the bird race was nice and i liked it, and because now I have started looking for birds wherever I go, and I liked seeing different kind of birds and I want to get better at identifying them

It is simply magical to look at the different types of birds.

I will definitely come for the next bird race to spot more and more birds and also for the puns and humor and the dinner.

I would love to keep going every year to bird race simply for the energy that is created and the fun I have. This bird race was special because not only I got to learn from chandu uncle but from shubha aunty as well. I was inspired by her passion, her knowledge about nature and her bird friendly garden.

I was sick previous day and was almost not going to go but the I just couldn’t miss the one, the once in a year opportunity.