Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park


Safari on Sri Lanka


Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Monday 22nd of May 2017 and we left Laya Safari Hotel at 5 thirty. It is about 40 minutes from the hotel to the Bundala National Park. I finished the breakfast box from the hotel on the way to the park. We drove through a beautiful landscape, small villages and rice paddies with many egrets and herons looking for food in the paddies.

And same as in the other national parks, we had to stop at a ticket office and then we had to drive to the gate. And this time we had to bring a Guide along with us.

Bundala National Park

is an internationally important wintering ground for migratory water birds in Sri Lanka. Bundala harbors 197 species of birds, the highlight being the greater flamingo, which migrate in large flocks. Bundala was designated a wildlife sanctuary in 1969 and redesignated to a national park on 4 January 1993. In 1991 Bundala became the first wetland to be declared as a Ramsar site in Sri Lanka. In 2005 the national park was designated as a biosphere reserve by UNESCO, the fourth biosphere reserve in Sri Lanka. The national park is situated 245 kilometres southeast of Colombo.

The area was declared a wildlife sanctuary on 5 December 1969, and was upgraded to a national park on 4 January 1993 with land area of 6,216 hectares. However the park was regazetted in 2004 and the original park was reduced to 3,698 hectares. In 1991, Bundala became the first site in Sri Lanka to be designated a Ramsar wetland. In 2005, Bundala was declared a Man and Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. In January 2006, an area adjacent to Bundala covering an area of 3,339.38 hectares was declared as the Wilmanna Sanctuary.

The water quality in the lagoons has changed by the drainage of excess water from irrigation systems, and release of sludge from the saltern into Bundala lagoon. The habitats of the wading birds and wildlife in the shrub forest and dunes is threatened as a result of the spread of two invasive alien plants Prosopis juliflora and Opuntia dillenii around the tidal plains in Malala and Embilikala and the sand dunes and nearby scrub forests. The spread of Prosopis juliflora is made easy by uncontrolled livestock herds.

The seeds of the Opuntia cactuses (called Kathu Potak in Sinhala) are spread by macaque monkeys, and perhaps other animals and birds, that eat the fruits. It is also spread by people cutting down the cactus but leaving the cuttings, which then re-sprout. No biological control measures have been carried out with the moth Cactoblastis cactorum so far. Manual removal of the cactuses will be impossible as the area where they have spread over is vast.

Conservation projects launched include a turtle conservation project, and an invasive alien plants eradication program aimed at the removal of Prosopis juliflora and Opuntia dillenii. The proposed conservation measures are re-demarcation of the park's boundary and widen the boundary to include the northern scrubland, resettle families inhabiting within the park, a programme to control spread of invasive alien plants, create irrigation structures to stop the flow of irrigation water and management of livestock grazing.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Passing a school bus

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
we stop on the way to the gate

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
We reach the gate

We leave the ticket office and the extra Guide is in the back with me. We leave the road on the way to the gate. We’re going down to have a look at some birds in the wet land. We see Pied Kingfishers and Egrets. And yet again, the discussion about the difference between the Intermediate and the Great Egret came up.

But I'm 99.9& sure it was a Intermediate Egret we saw when we had entered the gate. Yellow bill with black tip as we can clearly see that the egret have breeding plumage. The gape stops at the eye, so yes, I'm 99,9% sure that we're watching a Intermediate Egret.

Bundala National Park, yet another beautiful spot. We saw a lot of birds, and babies. And on top of that I had a few birds new to me. Or not new, but I managed to get them on pictures. Especially the Eurasian Spoonbill. I had seen the bird before, but at a far distance.

intermediate egret, median egret, smaller egret, or yellow-billed egret, Ardea intermedia
Intermediate egret

Oriental darter or Indian darter, Anhinga melanogaster, snakebird
Oriental darter or Indian darter

Oriental darter or Indian darter, Anhinga melanogaster, snakebird
Oriental darter or Indian darter

Oriental darter or Indian darter, Anhinga melanogaster, snakebird
Oriental darter or Indian darter

Grey-headed fish eagle, Haliaeetus ichthyaetus
Juvenile Grey-headed fish eagle - Haliaeetus ichthyaetus

Grey-headed fish eagle, Haliaeetus ichthyaetus
Juvenile Grey-headed fish eagle - Haliaeetus ichthyaetus

Indian peafowl or blue peafowl, Pavo cristatus
Male Indian peafowl or blue peafowl
Male Indian peafowl is called a, yes you know it! A Peacock

Indian peafowl or blue peafowl, Pavo cristatus
Male Indian peafowl or blue peafowl
Male Indian peafowl is called a, yes you know it! A Peacock

Indian peafowl or blue peafowl, Pavo cristatus
Male Indian peafowl or blue peafowl
Male Indian peafowl is called a, yes you know it! A Peacock

Grey-headed swamphen, Porphyrio poliocephalus
Grey-headed swamphen - Porphyrio poliocephalus

Grey-headed swamphen, Porphyrio poliocephalus
Grey-headed swamphen - Porphyrio poliocephalus

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park - Spotted deer
We are gaming in a beautiful area

Red-wattled lapwing, Vanellus indicus
Red-wattled lapwing babies

We drove along the water and there were many different birds. And we saw quite a few babies during the game. And I'm very happy that I took the extra days to visit more than Yala Block 1, this is the place where most the people come. Coming down to Yala for a morning safari and then back to the beach. I suggest at least a week, and spread it over the different parks. Yala Block 2 + 4 + 5 is NO GO areas.

For the animals only, but I guess they get permissions to do nature programs etc. Of course, there will be a fee involved. If I come back it will be for at least a week. And as I have seen many of the animals by now I can relax and enjoy more next time. And of course, concentrate of the birds I missed this time. Especially all the beautiful small birds like the Sunbirds.

Black-headed ibis or Oriental white ibis, Threskiornis melanocephalus
Black-headed ibis or Oriental white ibis

Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee, Esacus recurvirostris
Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee

Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee, Esacus recurvirostris
Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee

Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee, Esacus recurvirostris
Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee

Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee, Esacus recurvirostris
Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee

Indian stone-curlew or Indian thick-knee, Burhinus indicus
Baby Indian stone-curlew or Indian thick-knee

Indian stone-curlew or Indian thick-knee, Burhinus indicus
Baby Indian stone-curlew or Indian thick-knee

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
We continue our drive

Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Little Egret

Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Little Egret

Eurasian Spoonbill or Common Spoonbill, Platalea leucorodia
Eurasian Spoonbill or Common Spoonbill

Eurasian Spoonbill or Common Spoonbill, Platalea leucorodia
Eurasian Spoonbill or Common Spoonbill

Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee, Esacus recurvirostris
Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee

Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee, Esacus recurvirostris
Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee

Intermediate Egret, Median Egret, Smaller Egret, or Yellow-billed Egret, Ardea intermedia, チュウサギ
Intermediate egret

Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee, Esacus recurvirostris
Great stone-curlew or great thick-knee

we drove until we reached the beach. It was a sand beach and a sand ridge between the wetland and the ocean. So there was a sand beach on the other side of the ridge as well and we could see the breakers and foam coming over the ridge every now and then.

We turn around and we drive back the same way we come. We changed direction and we were soon back at the sand. We tried to get out in the sand but we had to work hard for it. And it smelled of burnt something form the car when we finally was up on the sand dunes. But driving over the sand dunes only gave us one bird.

But it was a beautiful drive over the sand dunes and the beaches, you can see already from a distance that the beaches are not for swimming. Step sand beaches and you could see the strong current, so no place for swimming.

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
We reach the sand ridge between us and the ocean

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
We see the foam from the ocean

Painted Stork, Mycteria leucocephala
Painted Stork

Painted Stork, Mycteria leucocephala
Painted Stork

Purple heron, Ardea purpurea
Purple heron

Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Little Egret

Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Little Egret

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Driving towards the sand dunes

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
We reach the sand

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Now we have red sand/ soil

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
We can see how step the sand beaches are

Chestnut-headed bee-eater, Merops leschenaulti, Bay-headed bee-eater
Chestnut-headed bee-eater

Intermediate Egret, Median Egret, Smaller Egret, or Yellow-billed Egret, Ardea intermedia, チュウサギ
Intermediate egret

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Bhramity Kites

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Salt pans, usually they are full of Flamingos


Bundala National Park - 22nd of May 2017

We drive on the dirt road and suddenly we see a Red-wattled lapwing and Yellow-wattled lapwing. At first I think it is two Red-wattled lapwings. But when we came closer I could see that it was a Yellow-wattled lapwing. Good I thought, I can have a picture with both of them, nice to see the difference in size.

I was soon to discover that here was something going on. When the Red-wattled lapwing was leaving the Yellow-wattled lapwing got up and started to follow the Red-wattled lapwing. he Red-wattled lapwing turned around walking towards the other bird and the and Yellow-wattled lapwing laid down again

It continued and the Red-wattled lapwing started to get annoyed. Now they got hea don and the Yellow-wattled lapwing started to cry. Now my Guide/ Driver asked me to take a video, but it was too late.

Another Yellow-wattled lapwing came from behind us and the bird dove down on the Red-wattled lapwing and feathers were thrown in all directions. Then the Yellow-wattled lapwing flew back to sit on the eggs. It was over in a few seconds. A few seconds that would have been nice to have on video.

Red-wattled lapwing and Yellow-wattled lapwing
Red-wattled lapwing and Yellow-wattled lapwing

Red-wattled lapwing and Yellow-wattled lapwing
Red-wattled lapwing and Yellow-wattled lapwing

Red-wattled lapwing and Yellow-wattled lapwing
Red-wattled lapwing and Yellow-wattled lapwing

Yellow-wattled lapwing - Vanellus malabaricus
Yellow-wattled lapwing back to sit on the eggs

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
We pass an elephant

We left Bundala National Park and before we left we spotted a Elephant. Not many elephants today, and we never saw any flamingos. But I had seen plenty flamingos in Mumbai so I was happy anyway. OK, I was not so happy with the spoonbill. I had expected to see a few of them in breeding plumage.

But there was only one spoonbill and no breeding plumage. But as I say: No need to see all the birds of the world in one day. But we spotted on spoonbill on the way back to the hotel, in breeding plumage. But he was far away and the pictures will for sure not win any prizes.

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Oriental white ibis and a Eurasian Spoonbill

Eurasian Spoonbill or Common Spoonbill, Platalea leucorodia
Eurasian Spoonbill or Common Spoonbill in breeding plumage

We were soon on our way again. We pass a water hole when we're coming closer to the hotel. I ask the Guide/ Driver if we can find spoonbills there. We stopped and we went to check out the waterhole. I made a stupid video, but you will never have to see the darn thing due to wind noise.

I walked down to the water hole but the birds moved when they spotted me. Hard to miss 500 kg lard plunging down the dust path. We sat down and the birds came back slowly. But we gave up after 15 minutes or so. I was getting hungry and we went back to the car to get back to the room so I can have my lunch and a shower.

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Spoonbill with a white bill

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park
Eurasian Spoonbill in breeding plumage

Black-winged stilt, common stilt, or pied stilt, Himantopus himantopus
Black-winged stilt

Black-winged stilt, common stilt, or pied stilt, Himantopus himantopus
Black-winged stilt

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

Aladdin's adventure Bundala National Park

I had a shower and a delicious lunch in my room. And coming back to my room I discovered that they had decorated my bed again. Today with spotted deer, and it looks very nice. But it will end up in the garbage so it is a wee bit of extra work getting to bed in the evening.

Laya Safari Hotel
Spotted deer on my bed

Laya Safari Hotel
Spotted deer turned in to a heap of twigs and leaves

Well, afternoon safari and I was in the jeep at 2 thirty and we were on the way to Yala National Park. Will we see any leopards, or any other excitements? Click HERE to find out.




Safari on Sri Lanka

       
                  
OK, it has come to my knowledge that we have senior citizens visiting my web page. How hard can it be? So it's not very easy for them to see the blue coloured links to the next page.
Jiffy (also jiff)

noun [in SING.] informal a moment: we'll be back in a jiffy.

ORIGIN late 18th cent.: of unknown origin.

So as you understand, in a jiff pretty much depends on your internet.
So I put a “Next” button here and I hope that there isn't any problem to understand how to use that one. So just CLICK the “Next” button on your left hand side and you will be on the next page in a jiff!

Marunong ka mag-tagalog? Walang problema! Magpunta sa kabilang pahina pindutin ang “NEXT” button sa itaas

Faites vous parlez le français? Pas de problème! Pour arriver à la page suivante faites s'il vous plaît un déclic le bouton “Next” ci-dessus!

Haga usted dice el español? No hay problema! Ver la siguiente página sólo hacer clic el botón “Next” encima!

Farla parla l'italiano? Non problemi! Per vedere la prossima pagina lo scatto per favore giusto Il bottone “Next” sopra

Sprechen sie Deutsch! Kein problem! Wenn Sie die folgende Seite sehen wollen gerade klicken der Knopf “Next” oben!

คุณพูดภาษาไทยได้ไหม ไม่มีปัญหา ถ้าคุณต้องการไปหน้าถัดไป ให้กดปุ่ม “Next” ข้างบนนี้

Вы говорите по-русски? NJET PROBLEMA! Просто нажмите синюю кнопку "Next" с левой стороны и Вы моментально переместитесь на следующую страницу!

E ni Svenskar och inte förstår Engelska så ska ni skämmas. J och Björn, med det menar jag inte att alla mina stavfel ska ältas varje gång vi träffas.

Flag of Skåne / Skånska flaggan Well, the flag of Skåne, just a BONUS flag.


                                       

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