was even more eventful with superb photo opportunities of a variety of
waders which included both Greater Sand Plover and
Lesser Sand Plover. A Common Kingfisher also posed beautifully on the
whilst Striated Heron, White-browed Wagtail and other species fed
the lagoon in front of where we were eating. A walk along the beach
later in the morning,
including a clamber around a rocky headland produced Indian Pond
Herons, Common Sandpiper, Gull-billed Terns, hundreds of Brown-headed
Gulls and more.
Cola Beach and Agonda
Beach - 22
start to the day
with a few White-bellied Sea Eagle, Black-capped Kingfisher and the
ever present Black and Brahminy Kites seen from the balcony of our
room before breakfast. Indian
Pond Heron and
Striated Heron put in an appearance during breakfast again and offshore
Gull-billed Terns joined the Brown-headed
After breakfast we
walked along the
road to Agonda Beach and spent the afternoon
there, returning to Cola Beach in the afternoon.
Away from the beach there was more in the way of passerines with
Purple-rumped Sunbird (common), Green Bee-eater (common), White-browed
and Blue-faced Malkoha among the birds seen whilst walking along
the road towards Agonda.
Quite a few species were not specifically identified including some
hirundines and an Oriole.
A couple of Little Cormorant and several Egrets (Intermediate
Little) were resting in
the lagoon where the river crosses the road to the north of Agonda
Beach. Here Black Kites were even commoner and came very close indeed.
A number of Greater Sand Plover fed on the beach and were obviously
commoner than Lesser Sand Plover.
Agonda Beach, Goa, India, November 2017
Click on the image above to see more pictures
Flame-throated Bulbul, Cola Beach, Goa, November 2017
This is treated as a form of Black-capped Bulbul or
Bulbul depending on which taxonomy is followed
Asian Paradise-flycatcher (rufous form), Cola Beach, Goa, India,
Also known as Indian Paradise-flycatcher.
Beach and move to Benaulim - 23 November
I took a
pre-breakfast stroll along
the track away from the beach, the woods were teeming with life but it
was not always easy to actually see and identify the birds. One of the
best birds here was an Asian Paradise Flycatcher
Black-hooded Oriole, Indian Golden Oriole, Common Iora, a few species
of warbler (though only Greensh identified with any certainty), three
species of bubul (including Flame-throated Bulbul), Ashy Drongo,
Racket-tailed Drongo and Dark-fronted Babbler were among the species
seen in an hour or so.
In the afternoon
we moved to
Benaulim. Here we settled
in to our new
place with a walk to the village. This netted a nice flock of
Black-hooded Ibis, Red-wattled Lapwing, Purple Swamphen, Little Egret
and more. As the sun went down it was very nice to sit with a beer and
watch a flock of Greater Sand Plover feeding on the shore in front of
Bee-eater were the
commonest Bee-eater in the area
Lapwing, Benaulim, Goa, November 2017
A common species in the farmland around Benaulim
Black-headed Ibis, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
hour or so
spent in the fields behind the hotel before breakfast proved quite
plenty of new species for the trip. Jungle Babbler ssp malabricus,
Chestnut-tailed Starling, Brahminy Starling, White-throated Kingfisher,
Paddyfield Warbler, Jungle Myna and two species of Munia were among the
new species for the trip.
Scaly-breasted Munia, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
Green Bee-eater, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
Pied Bushchat, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
White-throated Kingfisher, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
Paddyfield Warbler, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
This bird is looking rather green due to being surrounded by leaves.
Most of the
remainder of the day was spent doing beach stuff
and drinking the very appropriately named Kingfisher beer, although I
did take a trip into town in the afternoon - more for practical reasons
than for the birding but as always I had my binoculars and camera with
me and turned up some more birds with highlights being cracking views
of an Indian Roller and more Black-headed Ibis.
Indian Roller, Benaulim, Goa,
India, November 2017
Purple Heron, Benaulim, Goa,
India, November 2017
flock of small
duck headed past over the sea in the evening - identified as Garganey
Anty's - our hotel on the
beach at Benaulim
Early evening on Benaulim
Even in this relatively developed part of Goa there were times when one
the beach to oneself....
had planned to
take a boat trip to explore more of the area but with my girlfriend
laid up in bed with an upset stomach and fever I dropped the
stroll and only took an afternoon walk into town to pick up essential
supplies. However, all was far from lost as I picked up Bronze-winged
Jacana, a couple of Moorehen, Southern Coucal and Asian Koel along with
good variety of the usual species.
Walking home along the beach with my telephoto in my bag I had a
White-bellied Sea Eagle come right overhead off the sea with a large
snake in its talons. So much for not walking along a beach full of
scantily clad bathers with a large camera....
Bronze-winged Jacana, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
Indian Pond Heron, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
Benaulim Beach Cows - for some reason cows were brought down to the
beach in the evenings.
our last morning I took another pre-breakfast stroll in the immediate
vicinity of the hotel - which worked very well
indeed. A Blue-tailed Bee-eater was very cooperative and even coughed
up a pellet. Black Drongo, Long-tailed Shrike and Bronze-winged Jacana
were among other species seen close to the hotel. Later in the morning
a Small Pratincole flew in over the beach and some Western Reef Egrets
Bee-eater, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
Here seen regurgitating a pellet of insect bits and pieces in the same
way owls cough up what they cannot digest
Small Pratincole, Benaulim,
Goa, India, November 2017
A bonus bird during a walk along the beach - thankfully one of the
easier pratincoles to identify.
Black Drongo, Benaulim, Goa,
India, November 2017
Drongos can be rather difficult to identify but with views like this it
is hard to go wrong. Note that there is something abnormal about the
lower mandible with this indiviual
Western Reef Egrets, Benaulim, Goa, India, November 2017
Part of the days evening fly-past. One dark phase and one light phase
There was always something
going on at the beach - everything from Beach Cows, Paragliding,
Fireworks, Religious Dignitaries and even some birds.....
picture shoot on the beach at Benaulim
The Beach Dogs (rather than
resevoir dogs) were a feature here. They were completely harmless as
all the dogs we met in India.
This particular one was often bullied by the other dogs and spent her
evenings sleeping at my feet.
Armed gaurds protecting some religious dignitaries from some unseen
The relgious dignatory with part of his entourage - the same one
requiring a gaurd with an automatic weapon. I remained calm and
continued drinking Kingfisher throughout.
The sea was pretty full of life with various species of cetacea seen as
well as Otter.
Palm Squirrels, snakes, geckos and other animals were also seen.
feeding on the beach
Indian Humpack Dolphin - no
need for a boat trip when you can
from the balcony....
This was the only cetacean I managed to take a picture of but there
were pods of something resembling porpoises (rolling rather than
nice (and quite small)
snake showed up along the path early
This Otter swimming along
Cola Beach (again, photographed during
breakfast) gave me a home-from-home feeling
Living on the beach at the
edge of the jungle it should not have
much of a surprise to have house guests like this....