While packing my backpack in preparation for our 14 day Annapurna Base Camp trek, I did question myself whether I would see enough birds to warrant carrying the 300mm f/2.8 L, on top of the rest of the gear, over 110kms in the Annapurna region of the Himalayas. Looking back at how many amazing birds I got to see and photograph, I do not regret my choice!
Being there during the late monsoon season made for a good temperature and great bird activity as many areas were still green, compared to winter when it becomes snowy. We walked through lush and thick green mountain forests all the way through to the alpine ecosystem around Annapurna Base Camp.
The forest leading to the Deurali Pass crossing is incredible. Lush, mossy, dark, there was an incredible atmosphere.
Melting snow caps give birth to stunning small crystal clear waterfalls like the one below.
The Annapurna range has some of the highest peaks in the world and makes for a very dramatic backdrop.
Below is a picture of Rachel observing a flock of grandala (Grandala coelicolor) that was sadly out of reach for a good photo!
In the photo above I was photographing some Blue Sheep (Pseudois nayaur) which were across the valley on the other hillside. Spotted by our guides who knew by this stage that we were interested in seeing any animals they could find. The sheep were but specks on the landscape only spotted due to their movement.
Here is a selection of some of the birds I got to photograph during the two weeks in this beautiful part of Nepal.
A white-crested laughing thrush (Garrulax leucolophus) seen before entering one of the villages. I was pretty tired and nearly kept on walking but I convinced myself to get the gear back out and try and get a photo.
A Yellow-breasted Greenfinch (Carduelis spinoides). We saw him bath in a small puddle near the track and sat down waiting for him to come back. It paid off and he flew back after a while and posed quite well!
This was my second trip to Nepal which I loved just as much as my first trip. To see all the photos and stories related to my first trip, as a student undertaking a Conservation in Practice course, please check out the links below.