South India wildlife - Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
As we headed to Nagerhole national park for a tiger safari we 'stumbled' across this little gem of a bird sanctuary that is a perfect addition to a wildlife tour of South India.
Located just 16km from Mysore this is a little jewel of a bird sanctuary, that although small in size punches well above its weight. Even before you head to the small rowing boats for a private tour of the lake and view thousands of nesting birds, there is great birding to be had amongst the large mature fruiting trees which surround the sanctuary buildings. For example the beautiful Coppersmith (Crimson-Breasted Barbet) can be seen in the Singapore cherry tree.
The highlight of a visit to the sanctuary is the beautifully relaxing rowing boat excursion, which allows you to photograph nesting colonies of Open-billed storks, Spoonbills and Spot-billed Pelicans. The trees and many islands are a hive of activity as birds collect nest material and work together to create a home for the new chicks soon to arrive.
This small bird sanctuary is also home to some large Marsh Mugger crocodiles, Bonnet Macaques and fruit bats. However, the highlight for me was watching the Pelicans swoop low over the blue water and scoop up large unsuspecting fish with unerring accuracy.
We have a brand new exciting wildlife tour of south india, with a visit to Ranganathittu and a tiger safari at Nagerhole