The diversity of Little Rann

the diversity of the Little Rann of Kutch is amazing. We were able to see nearly 140 species of birds and a good number of mammals in the 4 days that we spent here. Little Rann of Kutch is a vast area spanning nearly 5000 sq. kms and lies in 5 districts of Gujarat (NW India) viz Rajkot, Surendranagar,Kutch Jamnagar & Banaskantha. We covered the area in Surendranagar district.

Black Ibis

Black-necked Ibis

Sarus crane in the fields
Large Egret
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Birdlife at the Dasada Wetlands

The first evening was spent at the Dasada wetlands to check out the birdlife. Here is the Common Kingfisher

Sarus Cranes

A night trail near our resort took us to a Sykes Nightjar
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More Birdlife

White Storks at Moti Talavdi

Greater Flamingoes at the same wetland

A Reeve and Crested lark give each other company

Sociable Lapwing at Vanod. they take flight as soon as we get a little closer
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Today is the day we take a long early morning drive to Bajania from where we enter the Wild Ass Sanctuary. It is initially a bleak day with little prospects. so content ourselves with birding. In a distance we spot a female of the Bluebull

Desert Wheatear

And at last we spot a lonesome Wild Ass who takes flight seeing all of us on foot approaching

do some birding around the Bajania wetlands. Soon we get the message that a large number of wild Ass have been spotted & off we rush to catch up with them.
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Wild Ass at Bajania

Sure we get to see them. But they are not delighted to see us. so soon they start trotting off
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Jhinjwada- scenes from the Rann

The afternoon safari on the third day is a visit to the Little Rann from Jhinjwada, North of Dasada. This is indeed a fascinating site to see a vast streth of desert as far as the eye can see. The Wild Ass are here in good numbers

A Short-eared Owl takes flight. He is beuatifully camouflaged in the surrounding land
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More scenes from the Little Rann of Kutch

The feeling that you get is one of sheer vastness. It is amazing how the local flora and fauna have adapted to this harsh and inhospitable land. Photos shot at dusk.

A Greater spotted eagle takes flight
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the historic town of Jhinjwada with some old forts is another entrance to the Rann of Kutch. Below you can see big mounds of salt ready to be loaded

A view of the town
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Around our Resort

Rann Riders is an exciting place to stay with plenty of birding opportunities. Here is our group intensely looking out for birds.

Proud as a Peacock! This bird surely owned the place

a view of the ethnic cottages
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More around the resort

Yours truly with the local canine. Meet Tommy, a perfectly tame & welcomging watchdog

Dr. Nayana Shanbhag cuddles a cute pup (no name so far)

Kayum Malik, the owner of Rann riders (Left) with a visitor

A beautiful Pink Lotus blooms in the pond
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Butterflies at the resort

while some caught up with a quick afternoon nap, I decided to catch up with the butterflies. December is not really the season nor is the Little Rann a great butterflying destination, but you can still see some of those year round beauties. This is the Plain tiger.

Views of the Striped Tiger

Common Crow
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