Day 2 (11th March):

We had all surfaced by mid-morning and spent the rest of the morning relaxing and acclimatising in the hotel garden overlooking the Indian Ocean. The temperature was a humid 29 degrees C. A few distant terns over the sea and a Brahminy Kite were the best bird sightings.

After lunch and in the later afternoon, after the heat of the day had passed, we headed off to Bellanawilla, a small wetland on the outskirts of the city. It was teeming with the water birds you expect to see at any sub-continent wetland – bitterns, herons, egrets, ducks, waders, kingfishers, bee-eaters etc. There was so much to take in; the highlights were 8 Purple Herons in one binocular scan, Yellow Bitterns, lovely Blue Tailed Bee Eaters hawking over the marsh but best of all a pair of Painted Snipe which were on view throughout our 3 hour stay. Apparently a 1st record for this well watched site, so a great start to the trip.