Agonda backwaters- bird watching in tranquilityΒ 

AGONDA – what would I say about this place. For most of the visitors and other normal people/tourists ( yes, I don’t mind calling myself abnormal being living in a society where most people looks at Goa as fun. Fun as in Beaches, Bikinis, Beer, and Blast), agonda is one of those boring beaches where crowd is less and water is blue with zero water sports. No disco light shacks where they play party songs all night. In short its poles apart from the beaches in North (mostly, as in baga calangute, vagator, etc.). And exactly that’s what it catched our attention when we visited this soul catching place last year. This year we wanted to make it happen again. Feel the water and soil. Listen to waves all day. That’s how we wanted to celebrate our 2nd anniversary. And ofcourse eat a lot. Like a lot. 😁

Yum Swiss breakfast πŸ’›

We booked beach huts for 2 days in Agonda in the first long weekend of 2018. On the second day after lunch, we were strolling on the beach when this interesting boat captain met us. Like all the other boat riders, he tried to convince my husband for a happening boat ride to the beautiful butterfly beach OR to the serene backwaters where there is only one thing persists. PEACE. As soon as he uttered the word “bird watching”. This was it. I ran to my hut to bring my camera and we were on the boat the very next moment.

I had a great chat with Captain Nitesh who had avid knowledge about local birds and their habitats. I was so excited to meet a guy who was as excited to encounter a bird and name it as I always am 😊 He lived all his life in Agonda and read about the birds, their calls, their habitats. So now let’s begin birding.

Avidly seen bird of Goa.

Mr. White throated kingfisher. They mostly do fishing alone. It’s very rare to catch them in Pairs. You are lucky if you did πŸ™‚

Common kingfisher with a fish kill

They are not that common in any area. I was excited to catch one with a catch.

Southern Coucal taking a beautiful perch.

Juvenile Brahminy kite resting. You can always see them flying over your head. But I always get mesmerized when I see them sitting.

Even more beautiful matured Brahminy kites. Their beauty can easily austruck you. Most beautiful kites with their decent colour.

I have had quite a lot encounters with Indian pond heron. But this was only the second with striated heron with blue and grey stripes.

Hence another shot.

My first encounter with Crimson backed sunbird after tons of purple rumped visitors to my home and office :D. Well! they are all the same. NAUGHTY

A bunch of common Myna’s jumping from one branch to another.

“If you want to photograph birds, you have to be a part of the silence.” And that’s what we experienced there. Extreme silence and bird calls. Beautiful it was!

It was almost the sunset when a couple of Parakeets flew from one leaf to another and got indulge in their job. πŸ˜‚

No, we didn’t give them any privacy. Parrots are my husband’s favorite. And he snatches my cam when he sees one. He is so cute. Isn’t he? Hence this pic credit goes to him.

And we head back to the beach from tranquility as it was about to get dark. [UPSIDE DOWN PICTURE]

Bidding a beautiful good night with a ever more beautiful Black drongo.

(Double exposure)

There were tons of other bird species too that I was happy to encounter for the very first time and sad at the same time not being able to get a clear shot due to unavoidable circumstances that we were on a boat and they have the liberty to fly and sit anywhere they want.

Other species includes

  • Golden backed woodpecker (always busy pecking no matter how hard you try to get closer)
  • Indian paradise flycatcher( likes to perch in dark I guess. She wasn’t ready to come out at all)
  • Stock billed kingfisher ( flies really fast.. Like really)
  • Brown headed oriole
  • Red vented bulbul
  • Oriental Magpie Robin

And some common Goan birds like green bee eaters. I really missed the flycatcher and woodpecker this time. But next time, I would make sure I won’t…

That’s us with captain Nitesh 😎

Untill next time. Happy birding

You may also see Birding in Assonora, Goa

Or Birding from Home

Much love

RiyaπŸ’š

I wish I had wings ~ Poetry

I wish I had wings
I wouldn’t have to hold on my feelings
I could fly away
Far far away
Away from all the facility
Away from the word called ‘society’

I wish I had wings
I wouldn’t have to answer every phone rings
I could reach the peak of a mountain
I could scream and burst the lava of anger in my fountain

I wish I had wings
I wouldn’t have to follow the proceedings
I could vanish from the world I live in
To make my own space in the submarine

I wish I had wings
So to not let anyone know my doings
I would be on my own
Fighting through the trees and clouds
At least would be better than the fake smiles and humanly moulds

I wish I had wings
I wouldn’t have to live inside buildings
I wouldn’t be anyone’s burden
I could make a living in a simple den

I wish I had wings
I could follow my emotional feelings
And listen to my heart
I could keep trying to reach the top
Doesn’t matter how many times I flop

I wish I had wings
I wouldn’t have any bindings
I could sit on any humps or horns
I wouldn’t had to face any real game of thrones

I wish I had wings
I wouldn’t have to fake my choice of lovings.
I could choose not to wear leathers
And proudly show off my colorful feathers

I wish I had wings
No One had to listen to the songs my heart sings
I could decide what for me is best
And could make my very own cozy nest

I wish I had wings
I would have no permanent bondings
I could feel free, fly free
And my attitude towards life could be care-free

But.

I am not a flying beauty
I Have no wings
Anyone bothers or not
I have to burden my personal belongings

I wish I had wings
I wouldn’t have to hold on my feelings…

~Riya

Birding in Assonora, Goa

I just realized it’s been two weeks that I have updated about my birding activities. Please check out my last post on birding from home if you haven’t already 😊. In the last post, I posted about the birds that I saw or regularly see around my house area. Now this is the time for office area. πŸ˜‚ It might sound funny, but I live in Goa, and there is a birding opportunity in every 500m. So here are few of my clicks that I could manage to take within 1 hour before the sun sets and get ready for another new day ☺️

First of all, I would like to tell you about the location a bit. This place is a par i.e. the flowing journey of backwaters from a dam. I cross this little bridge over the water everyday to reach my office. Here’s the soothing view.

I must tell you this is as refreshing as it seems in the picture.

Now let’s start birding. I spotted and captured 3 major birds in this area with few uncapturable others like common kingfisher etc.

Cattle Egret – Bubulcus ibis

Cattle egrets are quite a lot common in Goa. You can spot them near any water body and sometimes on road sides too.

A portrait is must while playing with one of them.

In search for kill.

Yay, I got one πŸ˜€

The landing

Great Cormorant –Phalacrocorax carbo

I hadn’t seen this black beauty before and hence was getting confused with black heron, may be from quite a distant view. I couldn’t wait and took the risk of going the closest possible to the pillars where they were resting.

One

Another one

One + one = Two ❀️

the eye contact”

Little egrets- Egretta garzetta

Hearing the name might be confusing for anyone to imagine these egrets to be little and small, but trust me, they aren’t AT ALL.

Little ones are the most beautiful and awestruck egrets I have ever seen. They stand tall like any queen of the forest.

Majestic beauty taking the leap

The attitude walk.

Finally “The final Closure”.

And they took the click of the day award πŸ˜€

The fly and the water

While I using busy chasing egrets, the sky was full of kites.

I won’t say one can spend hours and hours in this particular location because they can’t. But still it’s a spectacular point for a bird watcher/lover.

Overview: All together

It was going to be dark, hence I quickly snapped a few macros and took off for the day.

Oops I forgot, I was near flowing water body, how could I miss the chance of experimenting with shutter speed πŸ˜€ a little waterfall πŸ‘‡

Don’t worry, just one shot now, let the remaining be in another detailed post.

Camera: Canon 1300D

Lens: Tamron 70-300mm handheld

That’s all for today’s birding. Stay connected till my next one.

Much love

Riya

“Love or lust” – Poetry

Is this love or it is lust ?
I ask just why it is must?

If it was lust, it wouldn’t be you
It would be my greedy eyes on you

Then why don’t we leave a chance
To get done with the romance

It has to be one of the laws of attraction
Else why not I get the answer for my equation

I know this is wrong, just so wrong.
But day by day my feelings would only go strong.

I said this is for the time being, it will fade away
Because I never knew you will made my heart your forever stay.

When did it happen, when did we come close
Only to let you know the situation will become worse

It is possible by not meeting
But how to stop my heart from beating

Yes it is my heart , that looks out for you
With its every beat, it remembers you

Now it’s time.
To realise you are not mine
Always it hurts
May be little lessen with time

The only person should know this is you
Well you know, my heart belongs to you

Now it’s time for you to leave
As you loved me, that’s what I believe.

Much love

Riya

Birding from home

Hello everyone, I am here to keep my promise I made in my last post about posting some bird pictures I clicked. So I am starting a series here of bird photography. But first of all, I should let you know that I am not any expert and far far from being professional in any kind of photography. Just to take my hobby a step ahead, I started this blog to keep me and you all motivated.

For birding, the basic amenities we require is a minimum 500mm lens and a better pair of tripod which is quite heavy on my budget. Hence I am using Tamron 70-300mm telephoto lens with CANON 1300D. Though I have simpex 333 tripod, I usually do bird photography handheld because of course, they have wings and I can’t move my tripod with their speed πŸ˜‚

So let’s start with today’s post, Birding from my home (balcony-2nd floor, terrace or downstairs). I live in Goa and my house is located in quite a Hilly place and I am just lucky enough to have a big bunch of trees just at my backyard, not reachable but visible from my bedroom balcony 😍

” Birds wake me up every morning with their chirping”

So let’s start with the very first bird I clicked after shifting here.

Greater coucal. This image is very special for me as I started my journey with this. I haven’t seen a bird that beautiful before sitting at home. So few more from the same species.

Lesser coucal

Southern coucal.

This was yesterday. He was playing hide and seek with me πŸ˜‰

Finally got what he had come for.

Moving on to the next one.

Purple rumped sunbird – male

Purple rumped sunbird – female

A black drongo visited me for the first time yesterday. Happy me. πŸ™‚

White throated kingfisher is the most vividly seen in Goa due to their distinctive colours. I simply adore this bird.

Oriental magpie Robin.

Sorry for the bad quality image. 😦

Red whiskered bulbul

I am singing my lungs out, can you hear me?

Some unexpected catches from homeπŸ‘‡

Chestnut tailed startling.

I was so happy to see this bird with a bunch of other species jumping from one branch to another.

I simply loved the frame to crop off a little..

Indian Pond heron.

After I see this bird for the first time that closely on my building boundary, I happen to see it everywhere where there is a water body.

Thanks for the surprise visit and giving me time to capture your poses.

Why not crow?

House crow.

Crows are boring to shoot as they are most common in any Indian region, so I pair them with sunset πŸ™‚

And sunrise.

Morning time coupling:)

Talking about birding from home, I hereby want to add two more birds which I clicked while from home in Bareilly, UP when I was at my In-laws house this October πŸ™‚

Eurasian collared dove.

Mostly confused with house pegion, being very common in that area..

Portrait of the same

Rufous Treepie

No they are not sparrows. πŸ™‚

So that’s it for today people. I will continue my ‘series on bird photography’ every now and then. Till then, let me know if you liked my clicks or not. Your comments are really appreciated.

Much love,

Riya

Dr Salim Ali bird sanctuary

Hello everyone, Today i.e. 12th November 2017 is the 121st birth Anniversary of the person who is famously called the ‘Birdman of India’. Only due to his dedication and systematic bird surveys across India, Ornithology has its place today’s India.

Being a padma bhushan and padma vibhushan awardee, sir SΓ‘lim Moizuddin Abdul Ali is a hero for many Indian birders /bird watchers.

Today, my post is dedicated to him.

This post is about the Salim Ali bird Sanctuary in Goa and few of the birds that I captured in my lenses around my neighbourhood.

Lets start with the place which told me about this legend for the very first time. Yes I didn’t know about him, as I was never that of a bird watcher (always loved the wings though in the open sky). But only when I came to Goa and started waking up to bird chirps, I have grown this keen interest in them. I cant say, how much I love watching their activities and trust me I can do that all day πŸ™‚

Lets start with Dr Salim Ali bird Sanctuary, that is situated on the Chorao Island in North Goa district along the mandovi river.

As soon as you deboard the rivander-chorao ferry, you will find this sanctuary just to your left.

This is the entrance path.

As soon as you enter this place, serenity will attack you from everywhere.

Walking paths has been beautifully carved helping birders and tourists to make their way.

These beautiful yet strong stone pallets will take you closer to what-we-call Peace.

Not sure what these are. Could be find everywhere in the mud. I took this capture as they formed animal figures to me πŸ™‚

I also see myself as I grow up – says the tree

Beautiful stretch of rich flora and fauna can be seen here along with the various kinds of bird calls. I wish I had a better lense when I went to this place last time. Unfortunately couldn’t spot any of those eye catching wings.

No wonder I want to visit this place again and again. Next time I am here, you bloggers will be with me πŸ™‚ I am such a jungle person.

You can see the happiness index πŸ˜€

I am sun’s alarm clock~says the bird

Serenity and calmness is what your mind finds in such places. Find some time for your soul and visit these nature bound places, not just to find birds but to find yourself πŸ™‚

These are my best frames that could describe the peaceful attitude of this location.

A far away click of the Brahmini kite πŸ™‚

Stay with me till my next post which will include my bird spotting activities in Goa. *Promise*

Till then,keep smiling and keep birding:)

Much love,

Riya

Diwali 2017

I know it’s been two weeks since Diwali but finally I get to sit with my blog just now. And I am so happy and in peace. So lets get started.

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This year, we went to Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh to celebrate Diwali with our sweetest family. So lets start with my family that I got after marrying my husband πŸ™‚

Without family, celebration is not celebration.

Hence its the festival of lights, diyas, rangolis and night, I got ample of opportunities to try out different combinations of manual settings. On the Diwali eve, I played with the depth-of-field a bit.

Though it’s not perfect 😦

#Bokeh

Light in night.

Be the unique you.

These were the ones I had to satisfy myself this time. Now let’s move on to the Diwali night. *Diyas* rangolis *and ofcourse*click click*

We made this rangoli at mom’s mandir.

T-light candles on quilled candle holder made by my SIL. I loved how it turned out as a center table decor.

Now allow me to introduce my model, my rangoli and craft partner (whenever we meet), miss fun, my sweet sister-in-law.

.

Finally a day Pic. πŸ˜€

Completed rangoli using candles and bangles πŸ™‚

When we both were in home, we had to have a photoshoot with fairy lights. Loved playing with it. || High brightness recommended for better view ||

*Enjoy * and give me feedback. It will help me to improve.No headband, no issues πŸ™‚

Follow your light, and see yourself shining:)

If you have to, get lost in yourself πŸ™‚

Smile and the world smiles with you.

* Hazy but cute *

This was it for today. Hope you liked it. Don’t forget to share your lovely thoughts. Once again belated

Much love

Riya

Chorla Ghat ~Goa Karnataka border

First of all accept my apologies for such a late post. I was really busy these days traveling quite a few places and clicking my heart out.

In the month of September, we (husband & I) went to Chorla ghat which is mostly the mesmerizing road from north Goa towards Belgaun, karnataka. The ghat lies on the meeting point of the two adjacent states. We started our journey from Mapusa, Goa and reached Chorla via Bicholim in around 1 and half hour on our Activa.

The early morning ride took us through the serene roads with breathtaking views by our side. Once we crossed Bicholim, the Google maps took us to the road that leads to Chorla directly as we preferred the shortest one. Once the cleanest air touched our face, we were sure we are about to enter the spellbound Chorla.

We crossed the famous Mhadei wildlife sanctuary to reach our destination. As it wasn’t season, there was no entry fee and not much animals also we guessed as we couldn’t find any. I managed to get a few macro shots there.

I love butterflies and always try to capture atleast one every where.

This bee was really supportive and gave me time to capture his moods. Bee happy πŸ™‚

My first Grasshopper click.

As we were moving forward on the road along the jungle in hope of spotting few animals like dear and some other wild animals,we were left hopeless. Though the route disappointed us, not for once.

“Most beautiful curves the earth provides are man-made – the hilly roads” ~ Riya

It was still monsoon at the last week of September and we were lucky to cross many small but beautiful waterfalls through the valleys.

Don’t forget the monkeys on the way.. Enjoy their actions but keep distance to be safe.

We passed many such curves and falls to reach our first view point when we literally skipped a heart beat.

This was the view all along the chorla ghat. Cautiously riding our activa,we reached the top most point of chorla ghat after which the karnataka enters and more chances of spotting animals begins.

As this was our fist time on this lonely route, we didn’t find courage to step out of our vehicle and enter the bushes to capture some wildlife. Next time, we definitely will.

That’s me posing to my husband πŸ™‚

We spent some time on the most serene point before we started our journey back home.

The combination of mountains and clouds are always mesmerizing.

On our way back, I spotted a white throated kingfisher which is quite common in western ghats.

A trip without birding is a trip incomplete.

I hope you enjoy this beautiful half day trip as much as we enjoyed. πŸ™‚

Much love

Riya

Yarned bottles ~ from my craft’s corner

To make a home decor at home is a zero cost deal. And trust me they look pretty as well.

For this DIY all you need is~

  • empty glass bottles. Like beer or wine bottle, milk shake bottles, ketchup or vinegar bottle etc.
  • Colorful yarn that lay around at home
  • Glue and scissors
  • Decorative items like stones, pearls buttons or anything of your choice.

I have made three such home decor using glass bottles which look really pretty in my showcase.

Used blue yarn over a beer bottle. And decorated with thermocol balls and buttons. Also used the decor as flower vase (handmade paper flowers)

Love to photograph my creations πŸ™‚

Two different colored yarn wrapped over a beer bottle. Decorated with quilled paper flower and Coils

One for me, one for my MIL πŸ™‚

  • Latest addition to the collection is this small milk shake bottle with double colored yarn and buttons. Simple and cute.

    My purple family πŸ’œ

    Hope you guys liked this idea of home decor as I find it really pretty and affordable as gift item. People like it more when you spend some time and creativity on their gift.

    Much love

    Riya

      Quilled flowers ~ from my craft’s corner

      Quilling is a form of art made with paper strips, usually rolling them and giving different shapes. I love quilling and I am sharing one such art today.

      The flowers has been made by just using the quilling tool and the butterfly is made using quilling comb.

      There are a huge variety of designs you can choose. It just needs your creativity and a bit patience.

      Hope you all Like it.

      Much love

      Riya