Wildlife Photography Workshop @ Bhadra - Part II

Wildlife Photography Workshop @ Bhadra - Part II

Here’s the second installment of my post on the wildlife photography workshop at Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary.You can read the first part here, Wildlife Photography Workshop @ Bhadra - Part I

The morning boat safari on Day 2 of the workshop came to a close. As we headed back to the resort, we had a feeling that it was a kind of a mixed bag. Had some good sightings but less to photograph due to cloud cover and bad light. But that is precisely the beauty, the unpredictability of nature or wildlife.

We spent good time with the highly active and vociferous Riverterns, saw an Osprey, a juvenile Grey headed fishing eagle, got to observe the behavior of a big herd of spotted deer and towards close, saw a Brahminy Kite and a group of Indian Cormorants.

Coming back to the resort, we headed straight to the Gol Ghar for breakfast. After a refreshing breakfast, consensus was to go around within the resort property looking for photographic opportunities, mostly macro subjects. So, we all picked up our cameras and headed out.

The resort is actually made up of 2 or if I remember correctly 3 islands connected by wooden bridges.Incidentally, they were no more islands. The water in the reservoir had receded so much this summer that there was to be no water underneath the bridges. So, one could easily walk across the water bed between the islands.

We walked around the reservoir bed area shooting butterflies, the common crow and blue tigers were in abundance. As I walked into the second island, I noticed a strange looking insect that looked like a dragon fly or a damsel fly. Shreeram and I tried to get some shots of that. Here’s what I managed to get.

Then we went further up into the second island looking for interesting subjects. Did find many ants and spiders, but no snakes though. Would have been interesting to find one :-).

It was getting very hot and sweltering and we decided to head back to the common room for a couple more of theory sessions and some reviews of our photographs taken thus far.

As I got to the common room, Radha told me that there was a beautiful and colorful lizard on the tree opposite the balcony and all were photographing it. I too joined in.

After couple of interesting sessions on photographing animal behavior and creative photography and some good reviews and suggestions on our photographs taken till now, we broke for lunch.

Just before lunch, Shreeram showed me a photo he had taken of a beautiful caterpillar that he had seen right outside our room, was a great shot. I too wanted to get a shot of that, so made a mental note to do that right after lunch.

That is exactly what I did after lunch, went to our room and looked around for the caterpillar. After sometime of looking, spotted it on a plant nearby, happily devouring the leaves out there. This is the shot I managed.

The way it was sweltering with humidity at its peaks, we were worried that it might start pouring anytime.With fingers crossed, we were getting ready for the evening boat safari.

Heading down to the boating area for the evening ride into the Bhadra reservoir, we were happy that the rain god had shown mercy on us finally. Light was better as well and we were hoping for some good sightings and good photographic opportunities.

As we neared the Rivertern island, we were audience to the amazing amount of activity of the highly active and vocal birds. Our boat was neatly positioned this time around and the engine switched off too, since there was less wind and little worry of the boat drifting away because of that.

The moment we stopped there, we spotted Pratincoles running around amongst the rocks. They are really masters of camouflage, so difficult to spot them among those rocks.

And then, there were Rivertens, in their hundreds, flying about, fishing and squabbling. There was so much activity all around that it was getting difficult to isolate subjects, what to photograph, was becoming a real challenge out there… :) . I was becoming completely shutter crazy at times. A few of the shots here..

After spending sometime with the birds and all the action, we decided to move on. Just as our boat was backing up, one of the riverterns flew in with a fish in its mouth and sat close to the place where our boat was positioned. Just then, another rivertern came in fighting for the fish.Was nice to see the action, tried out a few shots, even as the boat was moving and rocking. Here’s the one I could manage.

We spent good amount of time observing the riverterns and their behavior.Was great fun. Here are a few more shots, hope you enjoy them…..

Towards the end of the safari, we sighted a small herd of elephants getting out of the waters after a good refreshing play around. As they heard our boat approaching, the headed back pretty quickly into the forest.

We also sighted a lone tusker, with a big single tusk, looked like the other tusk may have fallen off or something.

That brought to a close, a fun filled and interesting evening installment of the safari. Thankfully, light was pretty good and was relatively more satisfying than the two earlier safaris we were on.

Hope you enjoyed this installment of the ‘Wildlife photography workshop @ Bhadra’ series. _Thought,with this installment, I would finish up on the series. But had so much to say, that, it seemed to be getting quite long, so holding on for one more post. _ Do come back for the third and final part of the series………

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