Last year during the Pune meet, I was at Kumbhargaon in a village home stay savoring the winter migrants. This year at Hyderabad in the amiable company of Asif, an ardent birder (whose family owns the oldest bookshop in Hyderabad!), I ventured out with Ajay to have a glimpse of some avian friends. We set out at the break of the dawn, drove for a while outside the city and then onto demanding dirt tracks to the hinterlands of Gandipet lake (also known as Osman Sagar) which was created by damning the river Musi in 1920s. The lake was quite dry and we gingerly walked across the lake bed which was quite mushy at many a place. After a considerable walk, we could discern a flock of Flamingos at a distance in a pool of water.
It was a wonderful sight to have a glimpse of these dainty birds in the early morning sun. We stood at a distance, quietly watching them as they went about their daily activities. Even though they were at quite a distance, I took out my camera slowly so as to not unsettle them, to register their presence, digitally. There were a few adventurous folks who had ventured onto the opposite bank to have a closer ‘catch’ of these elegant birds. Whenever I was focusing attention on the birds, these bipeds were always in frame, quite close to the birds (too close perhaps?) to have a ‘good shot’. Sometimes one wonders whether the beauty of bird watching is undermined by intrusive digital photography!
We just stood there for several hours savoring the richness of nature in front of us. River terns, sandpipers, larks, bar headed geese and others kept us company as we slowly retraced our paths back…