This short Kerala Endemics birding tour to the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary at Thattekkad and the hill country at Munnar is ideal for those looking for a quick birding trip in Kerala in South India. Most of the Western Ghats endemics are sighted on this trip.
Endemic Birds Sighted During the Trip
Kerala laughing Thrush, Wynaad Laughing Thrush, Nilgiri Laughing Thrush, Malabar Parakeet,Malabar Grey Hornbill, Rufous Babbler, Small Sunbird, White Bellied Blue Flycatcher, White Bellied Blue Robin, Nilgiri Blue Robin, Broad Tailed Grass Bird, Nilgiri wood pigeon, Black and Orange Flycatcher, White Bellied Treepie, Grey Headed Bulbul, Nilgiri Pipit, Nilgiri Flycatcher, Painted Bush Quail, Red Spurfowl, Painted Spurfowl, Grey Junglefowl, White Cheeked Barbet, Malabar Barbet, Hill Swallow, Malabar Lark, Flame Throated Bulbul, Blyth’s Starling, Malabar Whistling Thrush, Nilgiri Thrush, Black Throated Munia
Day 1 – Arrive at Cochin airport,then proceed to Thattekkad
Arrival at Cochin International Airport.We will drive out a chartered vehicle to our first destination Thattekkad. The journey can take upto one hour. Thattekkad is a lowland forest with several types of eco-systems – riverine, grasslands, evergreen, scrub, dry deciduous, lowland forest, enabling it to be one of the best birding destinations in India. This is also home to most of the endemics of the Western Ghats. Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary is located in the dense tropical evergreen and deciduous forests and grassland patches. The picturesque landscapes here makes it a choicest bird sanctuary for those who love being close to nature. We will settle into Eldhose Birding lodge set in the midst of forest and proceed for birding.We will spend the day by visiting various forests areas in and around Thattekkad, looking for endemics such as Malabar Parakeet, Malabar Grey Hornbill, White Bellied Blue Flycatcher, Black Throated Munia, White bellied Woodpecker, Red Spurfowl, Grey Jungle fowl ,Malabar Barbet besides owls like the Mottled Wood Owl, Ceylon Bay Owl, Oriental scopes owl, Brown Fish Owl, Brown Hawk Owl ,Indian Scopes Owl and Spot bellied Eagle Owl.Overnight stay at Eldhose Birding lodge.
Day 2- Full day in Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary
Looking for South Indian forest birds including endemic and nocturnal birds. Also butterflies, forest mammals and other wildlife.Mammals sighting include Slender loris,Malabar Giant Squirrel and many others.Overnight stay at Eldhose Birding Lodge.
Day 3 – Munnar
We will set off to the mountain town of Munnar early morning. The drive will take approximately 2 hours.Proceed for birding at Eravikulam National Park where we should sight the Nilgiri Pipit, Kerala Laughing Thrush, Nilgiri Wood Pigeon, Nilgiri Flycatcher, Yellow Throated Bulbul and more widespread species. We will also visit the shola-grass lands of Munnar to search for Nilgiri Thrush, Painted Bush Quail, Black and Orange Flycatcher etc.Overnight stay at a hotel near to the reserve.
Day 4 – Munnar
Birding around munnar hill station.We will look for higher altitude species such as Nilgiri Wood Pigeon , Nilgiri flycatcher , endemic black and orange flycatcher and many others.Overnight stay at Eldhose Birding Lodge.
Day 5- Full day in Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary
Looking for South Indian forest birds including endemic and nocturnal birds. Also we will visit another side of lowland forest in the afternoon.Overnight stay at Eldhose Birding Lodge.
Day 6– Depart
Depart back to Kochi after breakfast. Your Kerala Endemic Birding Tour ends.