The IInd Uttarakhand Bird Spring Festival – A Shutterbugs Delight!  

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Bird-watching is, perhaps, one of the most quaint and timeless recreational activity known to man. It requires patience and a zeal for the natural sights and sounds of birds and that’s precisely what makes it special.  In that spirit, the IInd Uttarakhand Spring Bird Festival is here and will be held from the 4th of February to the 8th of February 2015 at the Pawalgarh Conservation Reserve. At the heart of the festival lies the simple aim of raising awareness about bird conservation. One of the secondary, but equally significant, aims has been to promote the Kumaon region and the state of Uttarakhand as a fantastic destination for bird-watching. While bird-watching enthusiasts prepare for their perfect event, photographers, too, have a lot to be excited about.

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An exclusive bird-photography workshop is being conducted by renowned bird photographers Anup Sah and Sumit K. Sen. It is a workshop that has been designed keeping both beginner and experienced photographers in mind and aims to teach the participants about different digital techniques such as digi-scoping, composition, post-processing etc. The workshop is a combination of lectures and field work. It is free of cost and has limited capacity of only 50 people. Thus, all interested photographers are advised to register at the earliest. All that’s required is suitable equipment and plenty of penchant.

Pawalgarh has amazing attractions nearby. While Namah Resort that offers luxury accommodation is just 12 Km away, about 5 Km from Pahawalgarh on a forest road is Sitabani FRH. The surroundings boast an impressive assemblage of a variety of birds. The trail leading to Sitabani is equally picturesque and just what the shutterbugs ordered. The woodpecker of Pahawalgarh is more than just the fancy, but also th official logo of the festival. Photographers can expect to sight quite a many during long walks through the Sal Forests of Pahawalgarh, famed for frequent sightings of these majestic birds. The most fascinating among these is the Great Slaty Woodpecker, the longest surviving variety of woodpeckers in the world.

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The walks through Sandani Gaja Grasslands will be equally memorable. In the words of Jim Corbett himself, it is the most beautiful spot with exquisite birdlife. Yellow-breasted green finches can be heard, seen and definitely clicked, all to one’s delight. The best, however, are the areas just beyond Sal Forests and very close to the Sandani Grasslands. Here, you can expect to see Black-crested Bulbuls, Little Pied Flycatchers, Blue-throated Barbets, Common Iora and more.

If, after a day’s stretch of hearing your shutters click, you crave some variety and there is plenty more at your disposal too. Attend a bird-identification workshop or linger at the book stalls if you please. Catch a bite at the food stalls and head over to a film-show or a cultural performance.

At the Uttarakhand Bird Spring Festival, there is something for everyone.

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