Eagle’s Nest & Assam Tour
Duration : 17 nights 18 days
Destination : Eagle’s Nest & Assam
Best Season : November-Marchl
INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
Kaziranga is renowned as one of the great national parks in Asia to view wildlife, and birds are an important component. When combined with the complementary and contrasting habitat types of the lesser known Nameri National Park an even greater and more exciting range of birds is accessible to the birder. Kaziranga’s importance for biodiversity conservation can scarcely be overstated. It helps protect some 25 globally threatened birds and 24 that are near threatened, not to mention being home to the world’s largest remaining populations of Indian Rhinoceros, eastern Barasingha (Swamp Deer) and wild Water Buffalo, plus holding very important populations of Indian elephant and tiger.
The World Heritage Kaziranga National Park is a highly reputed wild life protected area, located in Assam. A fabulous mosaic of grasslands, forests, and pools backed by misty hills. The Park has more than 70% of the world’s one-horned rhino population, 70% of the world population of the Eastern Swamp Deer and 75% of the world’s wild Asiatic water buffalo. It has a significant population of the Asian Elephant. Close encounters with the Great Indian one horned Rhino, and wild Indian Elephants Swamp Deer, Asiatic Water buffalo, and a host of animals are assured. There are plenty of Tigers around – but there is only a 25 percent chance of spotting one.
The Park also has more than 450 species of birds, 18 of them are globally threatened species. Because of the varied habitat types that the Park comprises of, as also of the strict protection accorded to them, birding in Kaziranga is very special. The varied terrain provides habitat for wetland, grassland, and woodland species The Bengal Florican is the main attraction. You should also be able to see a good variety of raptors. You are not allowed to walk inside the reserve. Birding is by jeep and Elephant. The
Eastern Range of the park is good for water birds such as Falcated Teal, White-eyed Pochard and spot-billed pelican (a colony of 200 pairs is located in this range). For grassland birds the Western Range is ideal. The Bengal Florican can be seen during the elephant ride in the Central Range. The nearby Panbari Reserved Forest is good for woodland birds such as yellow-vented Warbler, great Hornbill, and redheaded Trogon. Other interesting birds include Green-backed Heron, White bellied Heron (rare), Lesser and greater Adjutants, Black-necked Storks, Spoonbill, Grey-headed and Pallas’s Fish-eagle (common), Swamp Francolin (common), Grey-headed Lapwing, Black-bellied tern, Marsh Babbler, Jordan’s Bushchat (rare) White-throated Bushchat and many more Other birds recorded by us: Lineated Barbet, Blue-eared Barbet, Blue-bearded Bee-eater, Spotted Redshank, River Lapwing, Grey-headed Fish Eagle, Pied Harrier, Spot-billed Pelican, Black-necked Stork, Rosy Minivet, Spot-winged Starling, Dark-necked Tailorbird, Ruby-cheeked Sunbird, Streaked Spider – hunter, Forest Wagtail, Blyth’s Pipit, and Yellow-breasted Bunting.
Eagle’s nest wildlife sanctuary, West Kameng, is located in Western Arunachal Pradesh and are the highest in elevation. Named after the Kameng river which drains the basin of Gori Chen and Kangto peaks, this region is spread below the Himalayan watershed on the borders with Tibet in the North and Bhutan in the West. The topography is truly amazing rising from the Brahmaputra Valley in Assam through tangled ridges at elevations of around 1500 meters to 7080 meters on the watershed of the Himalayas.
The biggest advantage of Eaglenest (expected to provide the bulk of the star species) over other montane forests of Arunachal is a jeep track which cuts right through its heart from the pass at 2800m down to the flood plains of Assam at 100m – its easy access, excellentforest and wide altitudinal range is a unique combination for Arunachal.
The contiguous forests, Eagle’s nest wildlife sanctuary, Nameri National Park (in Assam) and the surrounding blocks of reserve forests, encompassing over 2500 sq.km and 3400m in altitude, form one of the largest protected regions of Arunachal. This east Himalayan area is located close to the Bhutan border in western Arunachal. We will be visiting the d Eagle’s nest wildlife sanctuary (mid altitude : 800-2800m) and some higher altitude (3000-4000m) localities further north below the Tsela pass. This visit to a really high altitude area and we look forward to augmenting the species list with birds of fir, rhododendron scrub and alpine meadows.
Some of the specialty birds which can be seen are: rufous-bellied hawk-eagle, northern goshawk, pied falconet, common hill-partridge, temminck’s tragopan, ashy wood-pigeon, tawny wood-owl, rufous-necked hornbill, ward’s trogon, golden-throated barbet, crimson-breasted pied-woodpecker, bay woodpecker, pale-headed woodpecker, grey-chinned minivet, rufous-bellied bulbul, maroon-backed accentor, eye-browed thrush, fea’s thrush, gould’s shortwing, white-browed shortwing, blue-fronted robin, little forkail, golden bush-robin, rufous-breasted bush-robin, puple cochoa, grey-sided laughing-thrush, scaly laughing-thrush, black-faced laughing-thrush,red-faced liocichla, coral-billed scimitar-babbler, slender-billed scimitar-babbler, Various wren-babblers (wedge-billed, bar-winged, pygmy, spotted, rufous-throated and scaly-breasted), gold-headed babbler, cutia, rufous-bellied shrike-babbler, green shrike-babbler, white-hooded babbler, red-tailed minla, Various tit-babblers/fulvettas (golden-breasted, brown-throated, and yellow-throated), Three sibias ( beautiful, and rufous-backed), Various yuhinas (black-chinned, rufous-vented and white-naped), fire-tailed myzornis, Six parrotbills (greater and lesser rufous-headed, brown, grey-headed and fulvous-fronted), mountain tailorbird, three tesias (chestnut-headed, grey-bellied and slaty-bellied), Various flycatcher-warblers (broad-billed, white-spectacled, chestnut-crowned and black-faced), four niltavas (including vivid and large), Thirteen flycatchers (including. white-gorgeted), rufous-bellied and grey-crested tits, sultan tit, beautiful nuthatch, wallcreeper, brown-throated treecreeper, yellow-bellied flowerpecker, mrs gould’s and fire-tailed sunbird, gold-naped black-finch, beavan’s bullfinch, brown bullfinch
DAY 01: Calcutta/Delhi to Guwahati
Arrival on BA 143 at 0125 hours. Fly from Calcutta/Delhi to Guwahati airport and transfer to Kaziranga in 04.30 hours overnight at Bon Habi resort.
DAY 02, 03, 04: Kaziranga
We will spend our three full days in Kaziranga exploring the park as best we can by jeep and on elephant back. There are several watch points scattered throughout Kaziranga, and we are allowed out on foot at these. We will make daily forays, twice a day into various ranges of the park and the nearby Panbari Reserve Forest by jeep. One morning we will take an elephant safari. -Bon Habi Resort
DAY 04: Kaziranga to Nameri:
After morning birding at the tea gardens we will drive to Nameri National Park Eco Camp for overnight stay.
DAY 05: Nameri
Full days birding at Nameri National Park specially for the White winged wood duck, Ibisbill,Broadbills,Collared Falconet, Pin-tailed Green and Pompadour Pigeon, Wreathed and Great Hornbill, Dollarbird, Chestnut-headed and Blue-bearded Bee-eater and Daurian Redstart,Prantincoles, and various barbets.
DAY 06: Nameri to Balukpong (Arunachal Pradesh)
Morning birding around Nameri and afternoon drive to Balukpong for overnight stay at Elephant Retreat.
DAY 07: Balukpong to Sessa and back
Birding at Bhalukpong and Tippi, 160 meters Tipi (46 Kms from Bhalupong offers birding along the road and on the banks of the Bhareli River.) This highway which is the entry route to the sanctuary passes along the eastern borders of the Eagles Nest and provides an interesting birding transect from 300-1600m altitude.Elephant Retreat.
DAY 08: Balukpong to Dirangzong
Birding drive to Dirangdzong, 1500 meters (164 kms) in 05 hrs.Overnight at Hotel Pemaling
DAY 09: Dirangzong to Sangti Valley and back
Early morning full day birding in Sangti Valley and overnight at Hotel Pemaling
DAY 10: Dirangzong to Sela pass 4500 Mtrs and back
DAY 11: Dirangzong to Lama Camp Eagle’s Nest 2350m
Birding drive to Lama camp,Eaglesnest for overnight at Fully serviced camps.
DAY 12: Lama Camp to Sunderview 2500 mtrs. Birding drive to Sunderview.
DAY 13: Sunder view to Bompu 1940m
Full day birding trek to Bompu, overnight at fully serviced camps.
DAY 14: Bompu to Sessni 1250m
Full day birding trek to Sessni, overnight at fully serviced camps.
DAY 15: Sessni
Full day birding around Sessni, overnight at fully serviced camps.
DAY 16: Sessni
Full day birding around Sessni, overnight at fully serviced camps.
DAY 17: Sessni to Guwahati
Drive to Guwahati and overnight at Hotel in Guwahati.
DAY 18: Guwahati airport to Delhi/Calcutta. Tour Ends