Malabar Pied Hornbill
We reached the village and began birding near the school. 3 Ashy Woodswallows sat up nicely by the school entrance as did a couple of Wire-tailed Swallows. A Mountain Hawk Eagle flew past in the distance as we focussed in on a couple of showy Little Spiderhunters. What wonderfully odd birds these are! Several Chestnut-shouldered Petronias and a calling Malabar Pied Hornbill followed as we then located 2 Vernal Hanging Parrots feeding and showing well close to the road. A flowering bush in a garden opposite the school held both Crimson-backed and Purple-rumped Sunbirds which eventually gave in for some photographs.
Malabar Pied Hornbill
Next, we walked across the school playing field where 2 White-browed Wagtails strolled around and an Indian Golden Oriole sat up in a distant tree. Behind the field we then explored an area of dry open woodland and things livened up even more. Red-whiskered Bulbuls where everywhere and joined by the odd Red-vented Bulbul. Ashy Drongos seemed common here too but the star bird by a long way was an incredibly confiding Blue-faced Malkoha. This usually skulking species is hard to catch up with but to have one sitting in the open in the sun was truly exceptional and even had Leio excited! At the same spot a large fruiting tree held Greater Coucal, Asian Koel, Indian Golden Oriole, Golden-fronted Leafbird, 2 Common Iora, Common Woodshrike and Bar-headed Cuckoo Shrike! Further on we then had a small group of Dark-fronted Babblers, a pair of Loten's Sunbirds, Purple Sunbirds, Shikra, a single Chestnut-headed Bee-eater and both Thick-billed and Nilgiri Flowerpecker.
Indian Golden Oriole
Bar-winged Flycatcher Shrike
Driving back to the camp we stumbled upon a male Grey Junglefowl by the road and when that had flown things got even better as it was replaced by a stonking Emerald Dove in the same spot!
Back at camp for late morning birding and lunch the birds just kept coming. Along the entrance track we had our first Indian Peafowl plus Brown Shrike, Asian Fairy Bluebird, Nilgiri Flowerpecker, Flame-throated Bulbul, Tickell's Blue Flycatcher, 2 Black-naped Monarchs, c6 Jungle Babblers, Common Tailorbird, 2 Streak-throated Swallows, 4 Brahminy Kite (scarce here), several Large-billed Crows and Malabar Parakeet. Around the dining area at camp I busied myself photographing Indian Blackbird and Oriental Magpie Robin while a Heart-spotted Woodpecker managed to elude my lens!
Malabar Grey Hornbill
Tickell's Blue Flycatcher
Oriental Magpie Robin