One of the largest birds in Sri Lanka, it is often found as solitary individuals, stalking the edges of ponds, tanks, marshes, and villus in search of frogs, crabs, fish, lizards, small mammals, and snakes. We were lucky to see a pair basking in the morning sun on our safari
Mugger crocodiles are one of the two crocodile species found in Sri Lanka. They are abundant in almost every waterhole in Yala National Park, waiting patiently for their next meal.
Although peacocks are a very common sight throughout the dry zone of Sri Lanka, peacock chicks are a rather rare sight to see. The chicks are well camouflaged to avoid predators, and follow their mother most of the time.
Sri Lanka is renown for its giant leopards and this immense individual is a prime example of the island’s top predator.
We were circling Kotabandi Wewa, alerted by alarm calls of deer and time was ticking when we came upon this female casually strolling across the road. Not the least perturbed by our jeep, she leisurely made her way across the sand without breaking stride and vanished into the forest – a magical moment.
One of the four bee-eater species recorded in Sri Lanka, the blue-tailed bee-eater can be distinguished from the little green bee-eater by its brown throat and namesake blue tail. This guy was perched just next to our jeep and posing for the camera.
Cruising the backroads of Yala National Park, we came across this young female lying on a sun-warmed rock by the side of the road. She was completely at ease and provided us with a wonderful, truly private encounter with an apex predator.
The Alexandrine parakeet is the largest species of parrot found in the island. It is easily identified by its heavy beak and prominent red shoulder patch. This individual was sunning itself after a relatively chilly night.
We had an up-close and personal encounter with Nandimithra, one of Yala’s iconic tuskers, down the Heenwewa road in a perfect evening. The tusker appears to have just finished off a good mud bath, hence the red coloration.
The brahminy starling, or brahminy mynah, is a migrant species that can be seen in the scrubs of Yala during the northern hemispheric winter. This male and female pair was sighted just outside Jetwing Safari Camp, during our morning bird walk.