Birding on the River Brahmaputra, Guwahati

North-East India especially Assam and Arunachal Pradesh is an avian lovers paradise. Because of the terrain, the location and the river bodies of Brahmaputra, this area plays host to both migratory birds and non-migratory birds.

Guwahati Birding Map

So when I got a call in Guwahati if I would be interested in accompanying an avid birder and naturalist on one of his bird spotting trips, I jumped at the opportunity. The goal of the trip was to spot the ringed plover which apparently had just arrived in the city.

Common Ringed Plover, Brahmaputra Birds

The smaller river birds require quite some patience and a keen eye to spot them. This is because it is difficult to sight them against the neutral colour of the sand.

Sand Lark, Brahmaputra River Birds

The best locations for birding in Guwahati are

  • The Guwahati Refinery Quarters – This area by the banks of the Brahmaputra plays host to quite a few known birds. Since the river is accessible from this place, it is quite easy to hop onto the mud flats and look for river birds. (marked in the picture above)

Brahmaputra River

  • Navagraha Hills – The hills around the Nabagraha temple are another excellent location to spot birds.
  • IIT Guwahati – The IIT Guwahati campus in northern Guwahati is a famous bird watching destination.
Navagraha Temple, Guwahati
Navagraha Temple, Guwahati

The Navagraha temple is a temple dedicated to the nine major celestial bodies of Hindu astronomy and was built by an Ahom king in the 17th century. The original temple was destroyed in the great Assam quake of the 18th century. Local folklore though dates the temple much beyond the 10th century.

Brahmaputra River Birds
Black Hooded Oriole
Common Water Hen, Brahmaputra Birds
Common Water Hen
Brahmaputra River Birds
White Stork
Brahmaputra River Birds
Asian Pied Starling Juvenile
Brahmaputra River Birds
Spangled Drongo
Brahmaputra River Birds
Sunset on the River Brahmaputra

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