National Chambal Gharial Sanctuary

An early morning drive from Bharatpur via Fatehpur Sikri brings us to the Rajasthan - UP border at Dhaulpur where we board our boats to meet with the Snout Crocodiles (Gharials) and hope to see the Indian Skimmers.  Most of the readers from India will associate Chambal ravines as bandit country & the story of the dreaded Bandit Queen, the legendary late Phoolan Devi is still etched in our minds. so visiting the place has an extra aura about it!
 It is a wonderful 3 hour ride on the Chambal River, that despite inclement weather gives good sightings. the Hindi name for them is Gharial which means clock - when swimming, their huge bulging eyes look like clocks in the river!

Of course one cannot miss the amazing birdlife in the area & a birding trip to Bharatpur is incomplete without a visit to Chambal especially to see the critically endangered Indian Skimmer.

Regrettably, due to hazy weather, the photos may appear a bit dull

An Osprey

above & below; Bar-headed Geese

Above & below: Marsh Crocodile

A pair of Eurasian Thicknees

Snout Crocodile

As it had rained & had a hail storm, we were told that a flock of Indian Skimmers had gone further downstream & chances of sighting were slim. By jove! a couple of pairs suddenly obliged us & made our day!!!

Could not get enough of the Indian Skimmers

A juvenile snout Crocodile

Pair of Ruddy Shelduck

Brown-headed Gull in flight

living in harmony: the LargeCormorant & Brown-headed Gull share the same space

Ruddy Shelduck & Comb Duck

Red-headed Pochards

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