The weaving wonder

This little bird is a true wonder of nature. The nests it builds stand as a testament to its engineering prowess. I’ve heard it say that some of the nests survive more than two monsoons. Two Indian monsoons. And I tell you, it does not get anymore wet or windy than that!

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I’ve seen plenty of nests and I’ve seen plenty of weavers. But never a Weaver building its nest. I guess the birding gods don’t consider me worthy of watching such a wonder.

And here are the ladies. Lounging in the sun, waiting to be impressed by a new male and his new nest!






Just got my camera back from the service centre and found this little guy making a home for himself  in my bathroom. He automatically qualified as an involuntary test subject. I hope he decides to move on by tomorrow morning.

Bruises for an Egret

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I was vacationing on the western cost of India with my family. We were enjoying the sunset on the beach when I saw this lonely western reef egret running around in circles with the hope of catching itself some fish. I didn’t have my 500 mm lens with me – all I was equipped with was the 18 – 55 mm kit lens. Sadly, this meant that I had to get real close to the bird to get a decent shot. This was bad, especially because I had never seen a western reef egret before and I HAD to get a picture.

So I went commando style. I got down on my knees and elbows and slowly crawled up to the bird. I didn’t realise how hard this would be. A couple of minutes into it, I had scrapped  my skin raw and couldn’t take it any more. Sand hurts! But anyway, after ten agonising minutes, I got the pic I wanted. It was totally worth the effort!



The grumpy Leaf Hopper

I’ve been photographing more insects than birds recently. So much so that I’ve contemplated changing the name of my blog from birds to insects. But I realise its nonsense.

I’ve (re) invented a new technique to photograph insects. The technique involves a closable, transparent cup (which is also used to carefully release the insect into it’s natural habitat after the “photo session”), a shoe box and with some white paper, a home made light diffuser and some sugar crystals. It worked like a charm every single time I employed it to trap and photograph unsuspecting insects that had the misfortune of crawling into my apartment. But the last one I tried this on, misbehaved. Take a look at this picture.


In my mind, it cannot get better than this for the insect. I was waiting for it to start digging into one of those crystals so that I can start clicking away. But instead, it hops onto the sugar crystal and starts looking around as if to see if there something more interesting around!


This didn’t make sense. So I looked it up. Turns out it’s a leaf hopper! Which basically means they follow a strict diet plan that involves sucking the sap from leaves and trees and does not involve sugar crystals.

Here is another pic without the sugar. I thought he might like it.