Apologies for the recent ‘blog silence’; we have been busy with guests. Two new volunteers have arrived, replacing Jack & Henrik who are now trekking in Bhutan. Rufus and Theo are here until the end of the season and have settled in to the rigours and demands of Kipling Camp life!
Among our recent guests were three professional photographers from the mid-west USA. Their first day was uncharacteristically damp and murky, but they were rewarded with some fantastic photo opportunities in the Park including a wonderful sighting of a large male tiger; their photographs were on a different plane. Another pair of guests, wildlife environmentalists from the UK, spent time with two beautiful female leopards lounging on the limbs of a Mahua tree.
It has been a period of audio and visual supremes, with the migratory and winter resident birds almost at their peak. Around our waterhole, I was enraptured by this irredescent Verditer Flycatcher. Also in Camp I spotted a Brown-shouldered Petronia, and the evening arguments between a pair of Black-naped Monarchs just outside my verandah have made compulsive listening. Our Jungle Owlets too provide endless contentment.
In the Park, Rahim and others saw the exquisite male Paradise Flycatcher, a White-rumped Sharma and a pair of exotic Malabar Pied Hornbills, all in the same drive!!
The dawn chorus is almost too much to absorb in one go. To add to this the haunting sounds of rutting Cheetal stags now fill the jungle around us. In the Park, the male Barasingha have started their rut and are constantly bellowing to their hareem …..while in a distant bamboo undergrowth, a tigress commands her cubs with a long, low growl. Magical.
On the sporting front, our own Mocha village team won the three-week 36 team knock out Cricket Tournament, beating Baiher, a town three times our seize, in an electrifying final with a crowd of maybe 600-700. We provided the Winners Trophy in memory of Bob Wright who was instrumental in establishing this competition.