A Bird Watcher's Conference in The Greater Rann of Kutch

The Global Bird Watcher's Conference (GBWC) is an initiative by the Gujarat Government to put the state of Gujarat on the the Global map as an important bird area. Bird Watchers, Photographers, Biologists and nature buffs from all over the world attend the GBWC each year. This year saw people from Philippines, Malaysia, Taiwan, Finland, UK, USA, South America; plus many people form India as well. 

Birders and Birds.

Gujarat has an excellent bird life. I guess this is the reason why we eagerly look for a  chance to go there.  So when the 3rd Edition of the Global Bird Watchers Conference was announced in the Greater Rann of Kutch, we wasted no time to register. 

The Greater Rann of Kutch is a seasonal marshland in the Kutch district of Gujarat, and is the largest salt desert in the world. The word 'Rann' means 'Desert' in the native language. 
A Painted Stork stalking the camera!

Dhordo is the gateway to the Greater Rann of Kutch which is approximately 86 Kms from the city of Bhuj.

Dhordo is a Bird Watcher's paradise.The Greater Rann boasts of more than 200 bird species. This area is a major nesting site for Pelicans and Flamingos. There are 11 Globally Threatened birds found in this area. Some of them are: The Black Necked Stork, Macqueen's Bustard, The Great Indian Bustard, Bengal Florican, Demoiselle Crane, Common Crane and so on.

So many birds!

Since it had rained a week before our arrival at Dhordo, the salt was sticky and the Desert was slightly marshy, but that didn't stop us from seeing some amazing birds like the Desert Wheatear, Variable Wheatear, Great White Pelicans (more than 1000 Pelicans together!), Marsh Harrier, Greater Hoopoe Lark and the Eurasian Wryneck. 

Apart from the birds, Dhordo is famous for its White or Salt Desert which shines like silver on a full moon night- A breathtaking sight that we managed to see.Its even amazing to visit the desert in the morning  to see the first rays of the sun dance across the horizon, painting a colorful picture in the sky and flocks of birds in complicated flight patterns, weaving a brilliant design as they forage for food. 

We had an amazing time at Kutch. And if you've been to any such place with amazing wildlife, do write in to us and tell us all about it. Till we meet again... Keep Birding! 

Desert Wheatear
A Crested Lark looks for a snack!


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