First Global Bird Watchers Conference opens

This morning we were transported to the conference venue in the heart of Jamnagar. The Global Bird Watchers Conference was organized to promote the diversity and uniqueness of the wildlife of Gujarat state of India. 500 hundred participants from all over the world came together to listen the deep thoughts on nature and the birdlife of the state.


Conference hall of Jamnagar where the 1st Global Bird Watchers Conference was held. © Gyorgy Szimuly


In the basement of the hall nice photographic exhibition introduced the wildlife of Gujarat showing the talent of Indian photographers. © Gyorgy Szimuly

In the afternoon we were visiting one of the local birding hot spot, the Khijadia Wildlife Sanctuary. We enjoyed it despite we arrived quite late and only a short walk was possible before sundown. It was a huge contrast between the dirty and filthy countryside and the clean and organized wildlife area. It gives a real hope and relief for the thousands of wintering birds.


The diversity of habitats attracted many kind of bird species. © Gyorgy Szimuly


It was nice to watch birds with other birders from the other side of the world. © Gyorgy Szimuly

We had quite a few lifers including two beautiful shorebird species seen the on the salt pans. Great Thick-knees and Small Pratincoles was seen. We heard Grey Francolins in many part of the dry areas. We saw Lesser Whistling Ducks, Spot-billed Ducks, many Northern Shovelers, Northern Pintails and Gadwalls were flying between the ponds. Common Cranes were responsible for the melancholic mood of twilight.

We saw many shorebirds including a few Eurasian Oystercatchers, Black-winged Stilts, Red-wattled Lapwings, a Grey Plover, a Greater Sand Plover, Little Ringed PloversBlack-tailed Godwits, an Eurasian Curlew, Common Redshanks, Marsh Sandpipers, Little Stints and Curlew Sandpipers.


Glossy Ibis were seen frequently in the sanctuary. © Gyorgy Szimuly


Painted Stork was a colourful member of the birdlife of Khijadia. © Gyorgy Szimuly

Other birds of interest were Western Reef Egret, Indian Pond Heron, Striated Heron, Greater Flamingo, Black-necked Stork, Black-necked Ibis, Darter, Indian and Little Cormorant, Eastern Marsh Harrier, Little Green Bee-eater, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Asian Koel, Rufous-tailed Shrike, Rose-coloured Starling, Plain Martin, White-eared Bulbul, Cetti’s Warbler, Clamorous Reed Warbler, Striated Babbler, Purple Sunbird, Citrine Wagtail and Baya Weaver.


Beautiful sunset in the Khijadia Wildlife Sanctuary. © Gyorgy Szimuly


It was interesting to meet some of the ‘old’ Facebook friends who I had never ever met before. © Gyorgy Szimuly

In the evening a lovely performance was presented for the conference participants by local dancing team. The songs, colours and motions made the evening awesome and unforgettable. It was more than pleasant to see some beautiful Indian female dancers…


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