Go Back   Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 12th October 2010, 17:38   #16
Senior - BHPian
 
jacs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Kochi
Posts: 1,464
Thanked: 715 Times
Default

Hey ExtremeTorque, nice pictures there. Seems like you were lucky to spot many varietes like pelicans, herons, egrets, cormorants, ducks .


But sad to see these areas are not well kept and plastic waste dumpings by tourist.
jacs is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12th October 2010, 18:16   #17
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default

Thanks Joe, we were lucky indeed! I now plan to do another trip in Dec-Jan, just to catch the migratory birds.

The sun's direction was not favourable for good photos but tried my best to get this grey heron posing for us

Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-40.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-41.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-42.jpg

Some random shots
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-43.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-44.jpg

It was time for the pelicans to say bye, at dot 5PM - both days
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-45.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-46.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-53.jpg

Leaving the cormorants and herons wondering all alone
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-47.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-48.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-49.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-50.jpg

And while I was focusing on the left over birds, SURPRISE, SURPRISE! Ladies and gentlemen - A painted stork. Never thought i would see this in the wild:
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-51.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-52.jpg

The pelicans left us, leaving us alone to tread this path
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-54.jpg

Bird guru's, Suraj, can you identify this bird? sorry dont have better pics
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-55.jpg

Some sunset pics
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-57.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-58.jpg

Some pics from the near-by village. Future Team BHPian
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-59.jpg
Attached Thumbnails
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-56.jpg  

ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2010, 07:29   #18
Senior - BHPian
 
jacs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Kochi
Posts: 1,464
Thanked: 715 Times
Default

Nice pictures, lighting condition is a challenge with most P&S and Prosumers. I had a tough time shooting in low light with my Fuji and now joined the DSLR club to gear up for the next trip.

Buddy you need DSLR with a nice tele lens! Hoping to see you in the DSLR threads soon
jacs is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2010, 10:33   #19
Senior - BHPian
 
ranjitp1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 3,617
Thanked: 1,723 Times
Default

Nice pictures and quite an experience as well.!
ranjitp1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2010, 10:51   #20
Senior - BHPian
 
TaureanBull's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Indore
Posts: 1,066
Thanked: 311 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jacs View Post
Nice pictures, lighting condition is a challenge with most P&S and Prosumers. I had a tough time shooting in low light with my Fuji and now joined the DSLR club to gear up for the next trip.

Buddy you need DSLR with a nice tele lens! Hoping to see you in the DSLR threads soon
+1 to that. You have been travelling a lot and contributing too. We can have some better pictures.

This place seems to be a wildlife photographers paradise.

Are n't there any lodges etc inside? Are there many tourists? How about availability of hotels of various ranges?
TaureanBull is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2010, 13:17   #21
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ranjitp1 View Post
Nice pictures and quite an experience as well.!
Thanks ranjit. I have been following your thread pretty keenly and I must say your photos are much ahead of where i am right now.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jacs View Post
Nice pictures, lighting condition is a challenge with most P&S and Prosumers. I had a tough time shooting in low light with my Fuji and now joined the DSLR club to gear up for the next trip.
Buddy you need DSLR with a nice tele lens! Hoping to see you in the DSLR threads soon
I agree Joe but budgetery constraints made me take the SX 20 IS. It has SLR like features with a complete manual over-ride and i am learning, experimenting with various settings. The thing is that the birds were very far away, so far that the naked eye can barely see and i used both the digital and optical zoom (totalling to 80x or 560mm equivalent), hence you see the noise in the photos. Photos taken below 400mm came out pretty well, even in low light. So far were the birds that the painted stork, i only discovered it was there only in the photo!!!
BTW, congrats on your buy. Which model SLR did u pick up?
Quote:
Originally Posted by TaureanBull View Post
+1 to that. You have been travelling a lot and contributing too. We can have some better pictures.
This place seems to be a wildlife photographers paradise.
Are n't there any lodges etc inside? Are there many tourists? How about availability of hotels of various ranges?
TB, I am still experimenting with the new camera. THe bird sighting was so overwhelming that i didnt care to tweak the ISO, aperture, shutter p and stuff. Hence the noise.
Yes, it is a bird photographers paradise. There are 3 lodges max and Hotel Varsha is the best one in Kaikaluru (Close to Gudivada and Eluru). They charge 300 for double room Non A/C and 700 for A/C. me and wife were the only tourists there. The peak season is Nov-Dec-Jan, but one can hardly see any tourists there. Like i said, it is a very underdeveloped place with a hell lot of potential.
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2010, 19:44   #22
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default A quick update

Folks, with the long weekend coming up, thought some of you might want to visit the Kolleru bird sanctuary. The route is pretty simple, you take the Vijayawada highway (NH9), cross Vijayawada and Vayyuru, turn left at Pamarru and take NH214 to pass via Gudivada and then reach Kaikaluru. Total distance is around 400KM and 8hrs driving time approx.

See map below.
Name:  1.JPG
Views: 4604
Size:  48.4 KB

Divert here (the arrow mark is Pamarru)
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-2.jpg

There is only one decent hotel, hotel varsha residency. Please call them 2-3 days in advance and reserve your room over the phone. 09290101373 or 08677-224448.

To visit the bird sanctuary, you either need to head to Atapaka (just 2KM away from the hotel) or Kolleru Kota near Allapadu (around 11KM from Kaikaluru). I would recommend Atapaka due to its proximity, ease of getting there and presense of a lot of pelicans.

Just take a left turn at the 2nd Birds WLS board at Atapaka, walk 1.5 KM and you have your bird sanctuary. For kolleru kota, head to Allapadu, take a left here (there is a board clearly indicating the route diversion to Kolleru Kota) and it is 7KM from there. One has to hire a motor boat to navigate through the lake (Rate 300-500) for an hour, 2 hours ride.

The best time to catch the birds are early mornings (7AM onwards) and late afternoons (3PM onwards).

I will continue with the log late in the night.
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2010, 23:36   #23
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default Carry your binoculars and tuck in the telephoto lens

Just to give you an estimate of how far the birds were on day1, see below. The circled spots were where the birds were. Binoculars, Telephoto lens for the SLR guys and Tripods are must.

Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-1.jpg

The direction of the sun didnt help either
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-2.jpg

Last edited by ExtremeTorque : 13th October 2010 at 23:51.
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2010, 00:33   #24
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default Day2 of the sultry avian paradise - Kolleru Kota

You need to be an early bird to catch the early birds.

I woke up pretty early (and as usual spent another half hour waking up the better half) and we were in the bus stand by 6.30 to catch the next bus to Allapadu.

Found this at the bus stand - the ugly truth about caste politics (Translates to: The number of votes that are cast for a caste, that caste gets as many seats)
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-3.jpg

Shot this at the bus stand and I think is a wood sandpiper (please correct me)
Name:  4.JPG
Views: 1578
Size:  49.8 KB

15 mins waiting for the bus went in vain and we stepped out to catch the regular sharing 7 seater auto to Allapadu.

The drive is pretty scenic, with continues fish pond farms. The exploitation of the lake is evident from the sheer number of ponds and it is big business. For a change, aqua farmers cast nets above the pond to protect their fish from the birds. We could see from the auto that the fish were huge as they try to jump out of the water and try to move towards the water feeding inlets.

The aqua farms
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-5.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-6.jpg

After getting down at Allapadu which is about 10KM from Kaikaluru, you need to take a left turn that is clearly marked and take another auto to the Kolleru Kota that is another 7KM from Allapadu.

The diversion at Allapadu
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-39.jpg

At Kolleru Kota there were huge motor boats (jetty like) that normally ferry people between towns and to the temple in the middle of the lake.

The local 'gondolas'
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-7.jpg

Also, there is a road route to the temple, but only 2 wheelers and cycles/pedestrians can ply on the entrance bridge as it is made of wood completely. There is also a, SURPRISE, toll for using this bridge. A rupee for pedestrians, 2 for 2 wheelers. One can cross the bridge and then take another auto, waiting at the opposite side to the temple.

The bridge on the lake Kolleru
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-9.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-8.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-11.jpg

The fishermen and their catch. Notice the boat made of palm tree trunk. The local kayak contraption and only one person can get on it without sinking.
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-12.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-13.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-14.jpg

The traps they set to catch the fish
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-10.jpg

Our first bird
Name:  15.JPG
Views: 1421
Size:  25.7 KB

Birding being our main target, we came back to the jetty area and enquired around about the rates. The coloured one costs 600 and the one we took charged 350 (after much haggling) for an hours ride into the lake. The boat man, Krishna (9951735126 - exclusively for TBHPians) told us that there were not many birds (i am cursing my luck here), but little did we know that this was going to be one of the best experiences we had so far.

Boatman Krishna and his 'gondola'
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-16.jpg

To be cont..
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2010, 14:47   #25
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default

The wooden paid bridge as seen from our boat
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-17.jpg

No doubt the kolleru lake is a huge one. Early on we started spotting some Herons and Egrets but no pelicans this time.
Name:  18.JPG
Views: 1486
Size:  51.4 KB
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-19.jpg

I specifically told our boatman Krishna to take it slow as we wanted to photograph the birds. As i realized later, photographing flying birds, with us on the move is a huge challenge. Focusing just goes for a toss, even with features like image stabilization on my cam.

The lake is a swampy, marsh kind of fresh water lake. Like by-lanes in our cities, we could see by-lanes in the lake where fishermen were casting their nets for their morning catch. Having the boat to ourselves was a boon. Though i have never been to venice, with what i have seen in movies and some TL's, the boat felt like a 'gondola' with only me and my wife (romantic was the word i was searching for).
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-20.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-42.jpg

We could spot lots of species of birds flying above us and managed to get some shots. Wifey wanted a lotus from the pond and our boatman obliged and stopped to let us pick one from the neumerous that were blossoming there.

The lotus fields
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-21.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-23.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-29.jpg

Out for their morning catch among the flora (i felt like i wanted to get his job)
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-27.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-28.jpg
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2010, 18:06   #26
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default The birds we spotted at kolleru kota

These are a few birds that we spotted at Kolleru Kota. Please correct me if i labled them wrongly:

WOODEN SANDPIPER
Name:  22.JPG
Views: 1372
Size:  77.3 KB

BLUE TAILED BEE EATER - This looked very beautiful and my personal fav of the trip
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-24.jpg
Name:  25.JPG
Views: 1334
Size:  36.8 KB
Name:  26.JPG
Views: 1346
Size:  15.9 KB

WHISKERED TERN
Name:  30.JPG
Views: 1325
Size:  10.7 KB

EGRETS resting on the poles among the hyacinth
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-31.jpg

GREY HERON, these were becoming pretty common sightings along the lake
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-32.jpg
Name:  33.JPG
Views: 1359
Size:  62.8 KB
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-34.jpg

CORMORANT
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-35.jpg

BANK MYNA?
Name:  36.JPG
Views: 1314
Size:  38.8 KB

HELP REQUIRED ON THIS ONE My focus was on the Egrets and then i spotted the bird at a distance, not sure what species but it was large. Not a Heron for sure
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-37.jpg
Name:  38.JPG
Views: 1357
Size:  53.7 KB

GLOSSY IBIS (I think) a rare sighting. This one gave us the slip quite a few times and we managed to finally caught it in flight.
Name:  41.JPG
Views: 1291
Size:  5.3 KB
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2010, 11:17   #27
Senior - BHPian
 
jacs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Kochi
Posts: 1,464
Thanked: 715 Times
Default

ET, again nice pictures there. Surely you have some serious potential for birding there.

BTW one small correction as I come from a back water paradise in Kerala, those are Water-Lillies and not Lotus.
jacs is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2010, 11:23   #28
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jacs View Post
ET, again nice pictures there. Surely you have some serious potential for birding there.

BTW one small correction as I come from a back water paradise in Kerala, those are Water-Lillies and not Lotus.
Oops, quite a goof up i did there. I just looked up google images and you are right, water-lillies those are! Thanks for corrcting me Joe.
Yes the place has potential, the last segment is coming up shortly.
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2010, 14:46   #29
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default

One of the best things about our visit bird sanctuaries is that you get ample of time to rest as the birds come out early mornings and late afternoons. Our trip to the Kolleti Kota started at 7AM and we were back in the hotel (after a great ride in the lake) by 10AM.

After a slurpy meal and a siesta, it was time to hit the sanctuary again. Since we had a train to catch, we decided to visit Atapaka that was closer to our hotel.

A word of caution here. If you are planning to visit this bird sanctuaries, be ready to face a lot of unwanted attention like questions from the villagers 'where are you from', 'what are you planning to see here', 'are you from a TV channel? (I loved this one!)' etc. Every second person seemed to stop in his tracks and examine us and every third one asked where we are from and what is our work here. At one point wifey wanted me to convey to them (she doesnt speak Telugu) 'we are from mars and we are trying to look for our lost spaceship'.

With our prior days experience, we knew that the Pelicans come around 3 and leave before 5PM. So, we entered Atapaka by 3.30PM. This time we decided to beat the sun and try a different position to photograph the birds.

Young fishermen and their catch. The boy told me that he caught it with his bare hands!
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-1.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-2.jpg

Apparently there is some comfort that the govt. decided to provide to the visitors. Notice the watch tower at the far end of the benches. The first bench is where we positioned ourselves and the sun was to our left, creating some good lighting condition
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-14.jpg

The wind ensured the lake was completely covered with hyacinth in no time
TRIVIA: how many herons do you spot in the hyacinth? (The forest dept guys told me that Hyacinth is their fav nesting spot)
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-3.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-4.jpg

A closer look at our pelican friends
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-5.jpg

The team huddle
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-6.jpg

Just arrived
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-7.jpg

Those 2 showing their backs are the painted stork (sorry for the quality here, i had to zoom max to identify them)
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-8.jpg
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2010, 15:42   #30
BHPian
 
ExtremeTorque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 379
Thanked: 19 Times
Default

The earlier day we had enquired about the APTDC boats and were told they were out of service. There was one boat, thick in the midst of hyacinth that caught our attention.

In troubled waters
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-10.jpg

This was much closer to the birds than any other boats and we wanted to try our luck with it. Rushed back to the forest office (it is by the lake) and enquired again. The forest officer on duty, Salimullah Khan (09291541578) told us it would cost 200 for pulling it out of the Hycinth and for the ride (very VFM considering the distance we were from the birds and the bad photo quality we were getting).

He and 2 others started trying frantically pulling the boat out of the Hyacinth. The boat was just inching and I realized that it needs another hand before the pelicans call it a day. All of us tried hard and the boat started progressing faster.

A helping hand
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-9.jpg

By the time we came out of the Hycinth completely, there was a gentle breeze and the remainder of the lake got covered with Hyacinth completely. Thats when we called it off. Ofcourse, no boat, no money.

Hit back our original spot and started clicking away at the Pelican Paradise
The arrival
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-11.jpg

Settling down
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-12.jpg
Name:  13.JPG
Views: 1237
Size:  26.9 KB

Notice the IBIS and the HERON amongst the pelicans
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-15.jpg

The pelicans ruminate the fish they swallowed earlier in the day. When ruminating, bits of the fish fall off their beaks, becoming easy pickings for the other birds like Heron, Ibis and cormoronts.

This one was perched at the top
Name:  16.JPG
Views: 1227
Size:  30.1 KB

Deep in conversation
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-17.jpg

Ouch! That bite must have hurt
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-18.jpg

Some more have arrived
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-19.jpg
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-20.jpg

The zoom test:
a) At max zoom 560mm
Name:  21.JPG
Views: 1161
Size:  42.7 KB

b) 400mm
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-22.jpg

c) 300mm
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-23.jpg

d) 200mm
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-24.jpg

e) 100mm
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-25.jpg

e) 70mm
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary - The super sultry avian paradise-26.jpg
ExtremeTorque is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary and Kabini : Photologue robimahanta Travelogues 54 13th April 2012 16:04
Accommodation in Ranganathittu bird sanctuary? vinay.pillai Route / Travel Queries 10 29th November 2010 20:42
Kolleru lake bird sanctuary ExtremeTorque Route / Travel Queries 12 12th October 2010 13:00
A day at Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary and Balmuri / Yedamuri Falls jjains Travelogues 13 18th May 2010 15:32
Sultanpur bird sanctuary, Gurgaon - route info needed. DCEite Route / Travel Queries 5 14th December 2008 23:59


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 02:59.

Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks