When we came across with the majestic Indian Wolf for the 1st time in December 2015 during one of our bird-watching trip, we got totally mesmerized by the aura of this majestic mammal and of-course its hypnotic stare – a close encounter which will always be memorable. We have been visiting the grasslands around Pune for our regular bird-watching excursions but never came across the Wolf again.. until last Sunday.
I decided to visit Mayureshwar WLS this time, my 8th visit in past 2 years (oh yes, I just love this place). Started from my place by 05:00 hrs, I was joined by Pallavi, Arun & Rohan and we managed to reach Mayureshwar WLS by 07:00 hrs.
Completing the required formalities at the office in 10 minutes or so, we were off on our trail. We decided to take the main trail on the right as we drove slowly looking out primarily for birds. Typical of Mayureshwar, we were greeted by Bay-backed Shrikes, Eurasian Collared Doves and a pair of Red Collared Dove. As I stopped the car to get a better view of the Red Collared Dove, Arun pointed a bit far… sighting a mammal, saying probably a fox. Looking through the viewfinder, I saw and confirmed its a Wolf. Moving my camera a little to left, I saw another one. We could not believe our luck…! What we witnessed over the next 10 minutes, were probably our best moments in the wild.
Such a close encounter with a pair of this royal mammal was super special – we got good opportunity to observe as well as photograph both the individuals in a dream setting of green grass with white flowers, golden morning light and the unique habitat of Mayureshwar WLS.
Coming to birds, we enjoyed some really close views of the Crested Hawk-eagle, a surprisingly high number of Common Cuckoos (8 of them) in a very small area, Isabelline Wheatear and Pallid Harrier to name a few. See the entire list of species on the ebird checklist -> http://ebird.org/ebird/india/view/checklist/S32058076
As Pallavi said, Mayureshwar never disappoints and it very much holds true for me as well… be it the Laggar Falcon, the Indian Eagle Owl, a very close encounter with the Short-toed Snake Eagle and now a pair of these royal Indian Wolves.
Click on the link for more information about bird-watching at Mayureshwar Wildlife Sanctuary (Will be updating this page soon).
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– Rudraksha & Shraddha