Blue Whistling Thrush

June 3, 2022

When I was sitting for a Yellow-throated Marten (YTM) this evening, never in my wildest imagination, could I have thought that a Blue-whistling thrush would come and bless me with a shot.

This was taken in winters and that year, due to regular rains snowfall was really good, and the weather sparkling clean. As is my ritual, I was in Kartikswami temple, trying to get a wide-angle shot of a Marten.

It was evening and the light that lights up the Himalayan peaks in winters is something to die for. With visibility the best it ever could be in, winter is an ideal time to capture the habitat of wildlife. In summer, with the arrival of vehicles and tourists, the weather becomes extremely hazy and in rains, it’s always clouded.

The frame was set, it would be a YTM and hopefully, if he came late in the evening, a beautiful sunset happening on the Himalayan peaks of Dronagiri and Maa Nandadevi. The mountains and valleys to the front would be ideal for showcasing the densely wooded habitats of these shy but vicious hunters.

I should not be seen, so I went down a rocky slope and with my jacket, gloves, and a woolen cap on, keeping an eye on the camera to my left, began witnessing a spectacular sunset happening to the front.

Apart from the occasional calls of hill partridges, the valley was absolutely silent. The wind was bone-chilling, but the warmth of the sun on the Himalayan peaks seemed to warm my heart and body. It was when the peaks began to turn yellow when suddenly a Blue-whistling Thrush out of nowhere landed on the perch where a YTM was supposed to pose.

Wide-angle shot of a Blue Whistling Thrush with Himalayas in background
Blue Whistling Thrush in habitat

Frankly, at the time, firing from a distance, I was pretty sure the bird would be insignificant in the frame. But nonetheless, I fired some shots, till the bird flew away, scared by the sound of the camera shutter. It was only after reviewing the images on my camera later that night, I realized how beautifully the dark blue of the bird contrasted with the explosion of warm colors happening in the background.

And as for the YTM, it did come, and posed perfectly for the camera not long after.

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