Posts Tagged ‘bandhavgarh’

India Tiger Safari – Video Slideshow

Saturday, May 14th, 2011

Our Indian Tiger Safari produced some of the best wildlife photographs I’ve taken to date.  This video slideshow showcases the best of the best along with some amazing video footage of tigers and other animals of india.

A gallery of the best photos from the trip can be found here.

http://www.busscher.us/holiday/india/index.html

Don’t forget to check out the previous blog posts about this trip.

Tiger Trails Resort in Bandhavgarh

Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

Tiger Trails Resort - Main lodge

The Tiger Trails Resort in Bandhavgarh is a simple yet very nice resort.  The loding is very basic (a huge contrast to the Oberoi we stayed at in Agra) but was still comfortable.  Since you spend the vast majority of your time in the park it really doesn’t matter what type of lodging you stay at.  Those that stay at places like the new Taj resort in Bandhavgarh are really just wasting their money.

We also had a nice little visitor that kept appearing in our bathroom.  One day after a long and dusty game drive, I turned on the facuet in the bathroom sink, cupped my hands under the facuet gather water to wash my face, and as I started to lean down to splash my face I literly came face-to-face with this little guy.

froggy visitor chill'n on the faucet

After taking a jump back, splashing water all over myself and letting out a very girly scream, I realized it was just a harmless little frog.

Miki's new froggy friend

He also made an appearance one morning on what would appear, from a froggy point of view, to be the softest bed in the bathroom.  Problem was I had some business to take care so had to relocate him back to the sink.

froggy bed

Since there weren’t many guests when we stayed there all the food was served at the table rather than buffet style.  The food was all local and was delicious.  Miki even got to spend some time with the cooks so they could teach her some of the recipes.  The service was very personal.  Something that you definitely don’t get at the larger, more commercial resorts.

They also got some locals to put on a show for us one night which, as always, Miki participated in.

Local Dance Performance at Tiger Trails Resort in Bandhavgarh

We usually stay in more upmarket lodging but when I go back to Bandhavgarh I will return here without hesitation.  I’m sure it will also serve you nicely as a comfortable base for your tiger safari if you ever chose to travel here.

 

Tigers of India – Photos and Action Packed Tiger Encounters

Saturday, April 16th, 2011

Tiger crossing road in Bandhavgarh

The main reason for our trip to India was to see the royal bengal tiger. These are the biggest of the big cats. The national parks in India have a lot of other wildlife as you saw from my previous posts but the main attraction are the tigers.  I didn’t have high expectation to get a lot of great photos of tigers but with a little bit of luck, a bit of skill, the right equipment, a little patience, a good guide, and some crazy drivers we were able to get some of my best wildlife photos to date. Professional wildlife photographer Talat Khalid of Wild Life Photo Tours arranged this trip for us to visit his two favorite spots for tiger photography.  Bandhavhargh and Kanha tiger reservers.  As you can see below, there is a good reason these are his favorite parks.

Tigress - Aama nalah (our first tiger sighting)

We saw a total of 13 different tigers over our 10 days in the parks.  Some we saw on multiple occasions and every one of the sightings was an amazing experience.  The tigress pictured above is named Aama nalah for the area of Bandhavgarh that she claims as her territory.  She was the first of our 13 tiger sightings and it was amazing.  She was huge!!!  (most girls probably wouldn’t want you to say to them that but I think its ok in the tiger world).  She came so close to our vehicle and eventually walked right in front of us.  If the trip would have ended with just this one tiger sighting it would have been worth it.  They are truly magnificent animals.  It didn’t stop there though… it only got better…

Tiger - "New Male"

Tiger - New Male profile

“New Male” pictured above, is the son of “B2″ who is the son of “Charger” who is arguably the most famous tiger in India given his many appearances on national geographic, BBC, etc.  Charger passed away several years ago after his son, B2, killed him.  B2 is 17 years old now, the same age as his father when he killed him.  Sadly, history is about to repeat itself.  New Male is expanding his territory and needs to kill his father (B2) in order to get the mating rights to all the females in the territory.  We witnessed one such encounter.

All of the sudden we saw B2 run out of the woods and our guide knew that New Male must be chasing him.  A fight was almost sure to happen, he said.

Tiger B2 running from New Male

B2 ran across the road dangerously close to a vehicle.  A few years ago one tourist got mauled when a tiger jumped into the vehicle when being chased.  A very simliar situation to today.

Tiger B2 running close to vehicle

Then out of the corner of my left eye I spotted another tiger.  It was New Male.  My camera was still focused on where B2 ran across the road so I just kept the shutter pressed and captured the action at my cameras maximum 9 frames per second as he disappeared into the trees after B2.

Tiger New Male chasing B2

We feared the worst.  We thought it was over for B2.  New Male was sure to catch him.  He was only 50 meters behind and catching up.  We quickly moved our vehicle to where the guide thought they might come out of the woods… if B2 would even make it out.  About 10 minutes later we found B2 walking along the road.  Looking back to see if he son was still close behind.

Tiger B2 looking for his son

You could see the fear in his eyes.  He was worried.  He knew what was about to happen.  However, what happened next surprised us all.

Tiger New male got lost?

New Male came out of the woods but he seemed to be confused.  He was walking in the wrong direction.  He was still very close to his father but he seemed to have lost his scent.  He walked up and down the road around our vehicle but then eventually found a nice spot in the shade to lay down.

Tiger - New Male laying in the shade

B2 was safe… at least for today.

Tiger - New Male

While we were all sympathetic for B2, there was no denying that New Male is a magnificent tiger.  He was much bigger than he father, younger, and more muscular.  Just look at those canines.  Every part of this tiger was massive.  Even though they are pure breed killing machines they have a lot in common with tame house cats if you watch them long enough.

Tiger - New Male winking

Tiger - New Male (thats a lot of tiger drool)

He had a lot of foam-ish looking saliva hanging on his mouth and just like a ordinary house got he got rid of it with a couple little head flicks.

More tiger pictures after the break…

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Jackal killing a spotted dear

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

Most of the action that happened during our game drives in Bandhavgarh usually happened in the last few minutes of our drives.  This day was no exception.  We were on our way back to the front gate of the park when our guide saw what appeared to be a dead spotted dear near the side of the road.

Sleeping? Spotted Deer

We all thought the deer was dead and were anxiously looking around for what could have killed it.  After some searching we spotted a jackal waiting in the bushes.  Our vehicle probably scared him off his kill.  We backed up the vehicle to give some space between us and the deer in the hopes the jackal would come back for his kill.

To our surprise, the deer’s head started moving.  Then it started to slowly get up.  It wasn’t dead after all… at least not yet.  After it stumbled to its feet it just stood there all dazed and confused.  Then all of the sudden it started to run.  It probably just realized what happend to him and knew he needed to get the heck out of there.  The problem was that this was the edge of the park and they erected a wall to keep the wildlife out of the village that was right next door.  Bad news for the deer.  Good news for the Jackal.

Spotted deer escaping from Jackal

The deer didn’t have anywhere to go and the jackal quickly ran out of the woods after the deer

Jackal caught up with the spotted deer

The deer put up a valiant effort and with some pretty skillful dodging a weaving he did manage to get away… but just for a while.  The Jackal was just too quick for the deer and he was eventually able to bite into the deer’s ear and pull its head to the ground.  The deer was pretty tall compared to the Jackal so he needed to get its neck lower in order to get its mouth around it to suffocate it.

See the final kill after the break

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4 hour Tiger Safari in Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve time lapsed to 3 minutes

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

1) Front view time lapse

0:40 – Tiger sighting off to the left

1:35 – Breakfast

2:19 – waiting in line for the tiger show (more about this later)

3:06 – Jackal killing Chital (spotted deer)

We had a lot of other bird, owl, deer, and other various wildlife sightings but those were the big ones.

View the video on youtube here (soundtrack had to be changed due to copyright restrictions)

2) Rear view time lapse (best time lapse video yet!!!)

0:54 – Miki doing safari vehicle gymnastics

1:23 – playing with my ipad

1:46 – Tiger sighting (name = “New Male”) and mad vehicle scramble.  The most fun 10 minutes of the trip!!

2:39 – Celebrating our amazing tiger sighting with some ice cream.

View the video on youtube here (soundtrack had to be changed due to copyright restrictions)