Went to Pulicat and Nelapattu Bird Sanctuaries and a wild-goose chase looking for Vedurupattu Bird Sanctuary.
Pulicat was a bit of a disappointment, as we went looking for flamingoes but couldn’t see any. But we did see egrets, stilts, stints, herons and painted storks.
In Nelapattu, we saw pelicans and openbilled storks with their chicks. The chicks seemed to be approaching adulthood rapidly – a few of them were trying out their wings tentatively. The highlight of the Nelapattu visit however, was when we spotted a black winged kite devouring a garden lizard. This we saw on the power line as we were going in from the sanctuary gate.
Then we went looking for Vedurupattu. We had seen the sign pointing to a turn-off on the way to Nelapattu and ont the way back, turned into the trail. We reached Vedurupattu hamlet, where we were pointed out the trail to the birds by a few friendly locals. The trail kind of ended for us at a largish stream, which I now know is the Kalingi River. The place itself was quite picturesque, and in the surrounding thorny scrub and paddy fields we saw grey herons, hoopoes, kingfishers, rollers and the almost ubiquitous drongos.
On the way back, we were stopped by a group of women and girls in Vedurupattu hamlet. When they saw that I had a camera, they did a Pongal song, dancing around a tray with flowers and a basket of paddy. They all had big smiles on their faces when I asked them whether I could take pictures of them. Of course, all the “asking” was done in sign language!