Posts Tagged ‘mammals’

Bear Rescue Centre, Bannerghatta, 230319

April 4, 2019

On the butterfly group that I belong to, one member told us about the Bear Rescue Centre (BRC) at Bannerghatta, and asked for volunteers.It was then decided that several of us would visit the Centre and then decide on who would be able to volunteer. Since the Centre personnel wanted only 15 participants in each group, two groups of 15 members each were constituted. One group visited on Saturday, the 16th of March, and the other on Saturday, the 23rd of March. I was with the second group, and my anticipation was not disappointed.

The visit to the Centre, which is one of ten such facilities run by Wildlife SOS (an NGO started by Kartick Satyanarayan and Geeta Seshamani) started with all of us gathering in the Bannerghatta Zoo parking lot, from where Chiranjib and Prajwal came and picked us up, and took us through the scrub forest of the Bannerghatta National Park to the Centre. Set amidst bamboo thickets and grassland, the low buildings of the Centre blend well into the landscape.

Chiranjib gave us an introduction to the various bear species found in the world, and then narrowed down to the species of bears found in India, and the 77 bears that have been rescued and are now at the centre. A slide presentation showed us some disturbing images of bears that were ill-treated by those who captured them and sold them to entertain others by dancing; other bears were caught in snares for the wildlife trade. Chinese medicine requires the gall bladders of bears, and several bears have been rescued from traps. “We had more than double the number of bears here,” points out Chiranjib.”We have managed to stop the practice of dancing bears, and so we now get only bears that have been injured in the forest. Now, as the bears age and die, the numbers are growing less.” Indeed, as Dr Arun strikingly pointed out, the goal is not to need such a Centre at all…but that is not likely to happen in the near future. The bears are left loose in an area of about 74 sq. km, coming in to their enclosures for food; some, said Chiranjib with a smile, go first to one enclosure, eat the food there quickly, and go to the next, looking for second helpings!

Bears residing in the Pachavati block at BBRC//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Bears playing with the equipment built for them, at the Panchavati enclosure. Photo courtesy: BRC, Wildlife SOS

As we then went to look at the enclosure where food is given to the bears, more facts emerged.

Bears with simple injuries are treated at the rescue spots and allowed back into the forests; but those that have been badly hurt, or have had their diurnal rhythms disturbed (though they are nocturnal animals, they are made to be active and walk through the day by their captors),have to be put in the rescue centres for the rest of their lives, as they can no longer survive in the wild. As Dr Arun, the resident veterinarian who let us look in detail at the Operation Theatre and talked about the difficulties of treating wild and distressed animals, mentioned, the Centre is virtually an “old age home” for bears, where they will live until they die. Hence, the bears have to be given a diet that somewhat approximates what they would eat in the wild, with fruits and honey along with a ragi mixture. Many animals, used as dancing bears, arrive with their molars broken or forcibly extracted, and many also have cataracts, and most commonly, tuberculosis, from frequent contact with human beings who might be diseased and malnourished themselves.

We were then shown the “squeeze cage”, where the animal is put with as little difficulty to it as possible, in an upright position where it can be tranquillized if needed, and treated. Bears in the wild are creatures of uncertain temperament, and this characteristic might predominate in a stressed or trapped bear.

To allow them to forage as naturally as possible, there is a Termite Raising Unit, where termite hills are raised for the bears to raid as they would in the wild.

Termite Raising Unit at BBRC (2)
Photo courtesy: BRC, Wildlife SOS

The kitchen tour was fascinating, as we saw the various millets and grains that go into the bears’ daily diet. Sri Alauddin, when we visited at 11.30am, had already started cooking the ragi porridge for the bear’s evening meal, which would be cooled and given to them at 4.30pm. The diet for each bear is approximately 8 kilos of ragi porridge twice a day, along with two eggs, and approximately 2 kilos of fruits and enrichment treats.

Bears ragi porridge 2 a day, 020419 BRC Bnrghta.
The ragi porridge in the shallow steel containers, that the bears eat twice a day.Photo courtesy: BRC, Wildlife SOS

Honey and milk are added to the porridge, and sometimes they have to be added in front of the bears, to convince them, like one does with naughty children, that they are getting what they want! While we were in the bear cage building, several of the bears were waiting impatiently for their lunch, and one kept banging at the bars of the cage from the outside enclosure, demanding to be let in and fed! Both Chiranjib and Prajwal showed a great affection for these shambling animals as they described how each bear had a different personality and type of behaviour.

We were then taken to the Jambhava area (the other enclosures are Kishkinda,Panchavati,Chitrakuta, and Dr.GKV Block) and from the rooftop, we had a view of several of the bears foraging for the fruits (watermelons that day) that the staff left for them, in the open. It was delightful to see several Chital stags and does also coming for the fruit…and several birds coming to share the feast, as well!

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Tawny-bellied Babbler feasting on the fruit. Pic: Deepa Mohan

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Tailless Line Blue. Pic: Deepa Mohan

Several volunteers come regularly, and help the staff make the exercise equipment that the bears use to climb up and down on, and play with. Old, torn fire hoses are woven into rough thick sheets, and balls and sticks are added. These are made again and again in different ways as the bears’ play demolishes them.These are called “enrichment” too, as they do much to improve the quality of the bears’ lives at the Centre. The photo above gives an idea of the equipment.

We also looked at the differences in design between the older and newer bear pens, and found that changes had been made for the greater comfort of both bears and staff. Surely, this is a not well-known form of architecture and design!

Dr Arun, a veterinary surgeon who started with the main centre in Agra 17 years ago, was soon posted to Bannerghatta (which was established in 2005). He has remained here ever since. He talked with utter sincerity about the bears’ plight, without any sentimentality; his words were all the more effective because of this. “We do not want appreciation,” he says, “because we are quite aware of the work we are doing. What we want are volunteers, who will come and help our work in various ways.” The Centre is planning to have children from neighbouring villages come and know more about the mammals that share the forests and fields of Bannerghatta with them. They would like these children to know,not only about the bears, but about the other fauna, and the flora of the area, too, so that they know, and hence care, about the place they live in, and the treasures it holds.

The whole tour was well-planned and conducted, and was very informative, with an articulate Chiranjib and Prajwal filling us in on details, and Karthikeyan documenting the trip on camera.

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Pic: Deepa Mohan

We were not allowed to take photos of the Centre, but could take pictures of the birds and plants that we found interesting.There were quite a few of such plants and trees!

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Bauhinia racemosa. Pic: Deepa Mohan.

The Centre has much to be proud of. Over the years, the dependency on power from the grid or generator has been reduced by the addition of solar panels. Everywhere I found plastic bottles recycled to hold fruits or food, or used in other ways. Trees have been planted, greening the area, but the grassland has been left alone in its natural state, with bamboo and other kinds of grass providing shelter to other wild creatures and birds.

Indeed, we found so much of interest that we did exceed the time schedule and we finally had our lunch at the bus terminus area at about 3pm instead of 1pm as we had thought. Such was the care and affection lavished on the bears, that we joked to the staff that if provided with so much nutritious food along with milk and honey, we wouldn’t mind coming here ourselves in our old age!

We ended the tour with a group photograph taken by Prajwal (I clicked the group too) and returned to the outside world, very impressed with the work that is being done at the Bear Rescue Centre, and determined to work out how we could pitch to help the lot of the unfortunate animals who live there, and the dedicated human beings who try to make their lives as comfortable and forest-like as possible.

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The group on 23rd March. Pic: Deepa Mohan

We were able to do a bit of bird-watching, too. The bird lists

from the Zoo parking lot while we waited to be taken inside, is

here

and from BRC area is

here

*************************************************************

Facts and figures

Questions to Wildlife SOS:

1. How many centres of Wildlife SOS in India?
We operate ten wildlife rehabilitation facilities across India:
 Elephant Conservation & Care Centre, Mathura.
 Elephant Rehabilitation Center, Ban Santour, Haryana.
 Agra Bear Rescue Facility (for Sloth Bears)
 Bannerghatta Bear Rescue Centre, (for Sloth Bears) Bangalore.
 Van Vihar Bear Rescue Facility, (for Sloth Bears) Bhopal.
 Purulia Bear Rescue Centre, (for Sloth Bears) West Bengal.
 Manikdoh Leopard Rescue Centre, in Junnar, Maharashtra.
 Pahalgam Rescue Centre (for Asiatic Black Bears & Himalayan Brown Bears), J&K.
 Dachigam Rescue Centre (for Asiatic Black Bears & Himalayan Brown Bears), J&K.
 Wildlife Rescue Centre, Haryana.
 Human Primate Conflict Mitigation Centre in Farah, Uttar Pradesh.
2. How many kg of ragi, fruit, milk, etc each day per bear?
The diet for the bears comprise of approx.8 kilos of porridge twice a day along with two eggs
and approx. 2kilos of fruits and enrichments treats.
3. Where does the funding come from?
We are a non-profit organization and are wholly dependent on donations from supporters and
grants for our funding.
Rescuing and caring for animals is always a financial challenge whether it is buying food or
medicines for the animals, treatment costs, field equipment, vehicle fuel and maintenance or
even staff salary. We are a non-profit charity and operate from donations and grants. We
request people to support our efforts by making donations to http://www.wildlifesos.org and by also
becoming monthly donors and sponsoring the care of our rescued and rehabilitated animals.
4. What are the names of all the enclosures?
Panchavati
Chitrakuta
Kishkinda
Dr.GKV Block
Jambhava
5. When was the Bannerghatta Centre started?
The Bannerghatta Bear Rescue Centre was established in 2005.
6. What is the area of the BRC?
The Bannerghatta Bear Rescue Centre is spread over 74 acres.

The schedule of our visit was as follows:

10:10 AM – Starting for the Rescue Center.
10:25 AM – Reaching Rescue Center. Orientation.
10:50 AM – Enclosure tour and feeding.
11:15 AM – Center schedule and Types of Bears.
11:25 AM – OT tour.
11:45 AM – Squeeze cage and Termite Raising Unit.
12:00 PM – Bear Kitchen tour.
12:15 PM – Jambhava Enclosure tour and sighting from top.
12:30 PM – Going back to office area.
12:40 PM – Refreshment and Group photos.
12:50 PM – Sign-off.

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Blr-Pollachi-Anamalai-Top Slip, 100717 and part of 110717

July 20, 2017

Adnan and Sarrah, who are two of the most impressive young people, with unbounded talent only matched by their humility about those talent, invited me along on their trip to the places mentioned above, and I jumped at the offer…such great places to visit, and such great company to do the trip with!

I am choosing only a few photos from my Flickr albums of the trip, which are

1. Blr-Pollachi

here

2. Pollachi-Anamalai-Top Slip

here

3. Top Slip-Parambikulam-Top Slip (public bus route)

here

4. Top Slip-Valparai

here

5. Valparai, and my train journey back (that’s only the last 5 photos)

here

We started off from Bangalore rather late in the day, as they had to re-do their tickets to return to the US (18th August is their departure date). But though we did not take the “scenic” route, and travelled through Krishnagiri, veering away before Dharmapuri, on the Pollachi road, there was enough to keep us interested and excited all the way.

I told Sarrah I’d get her chai at one of the “copper boiler chai shops” on the way, and we stopped at Tiruppur, where Lily runs her chai shop. These copper boilers are slowly being replaced by more efficient,but less quaint, stainless steel ones.

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Lily’s mother lives with her, and she has two daughters. One is married and living in Coimbatore; the younger one works as a teacher in the school near the airport, just a few kilometres away.

Against the monsoon sky, these village guardian deities, called

Aiyanar

sit in conference…alas, the car hit a particularly bad pothole as I clicked!

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Saradha sat outside her biscuits/snacks stall, looking over her little daughter’s homework.

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We reached our hotel in Pollachi (Ratna Square, the building in the centre…the one on the left is a movie theatre called “Shanthi”, and don’t miss the amazing architecture of the bakery on the right!)

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The next morning, we had a superb brefus at Amutha Surabhi, just a few doors away,

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We stopped for a while at Aliyar on the outskirts,

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looked at the temples,

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the scenery,

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the fishes,

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the butterflies and flowers,

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the insects,

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Mating Damselflies

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and the people eking out their livelihoods

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at some cost to the environment

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We had to wait around until 9.30 am, when the Tamil Nadu Forest Dept office at Pollachi opened.

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We wanted to book accommodation at Top Slip, but could not book accommodation online, and had to wait to talk to the young lady in charge at the Forest Dept office. She did give us a lot of information, but did not even give us an acknowledgement slip; all she did was talk to the Forest Guest House in Top Slip. I do wish the booking could be streamlined…we found the morning enjoyable, but would have preferred spending it in the

Anamalai Tiger Reserve

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I’ll write about the trip through the Reserve and into Top Slip tomorrow…but will tease you with the largest butterfly in south India, which we sighted (amongst many other Interesting Things) on our drive!

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Creatures, and verse….

July 24, 2014

I got a well-meaning email saying that my photography was getting "worse and worse" and explaining all my faults. Now, I am a HCP..Hopelessly Content Photographer, who posts SMS (Shamelessly Mediocre Shots). So…I thought, what if my photography was verse instead of worse? Here goes…I saw all these in Scandinavia.

Tired of flitting.
A little lazy.
Stop a minute.
Upon a Daisy.

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“Scratch” the race!
This young hare cries.
Hidden in the high grass
Is the tortoise, slow but wise!

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The flower has food in plenty.
The bee, therefore, is rolling.
As he drinks the nectar up
He gathers up the pollen.

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This cat was keen upon its hunt.
And did not like being snapped.
Its agenda was very clear:
A mouse, eaten, after getting trapped!

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Big Chief One-Feather
Sat upon a pole.
Hoping for a juicy chick,
A shrew, or a vole!

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This moth lay on the leaf-litter.
Amongst the drops of rain.
Will it die where it lies now?
Or will it fly again?

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Can you see my horns? He asks
While running in the wheat.
He slants a wary eye at us:
Vanishes on graceful feet.

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Curling into a fetal ball
Is this hedgehog’s best defense.
I didn’t touch him or trouble him..
But caught him with my lens.

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Glorying in the sunlight
At the prime of his young life.
Grassy paddocks and well-cared ease:
What does he know of strife?

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“Life’s a bubble”..so it seems
When I watch this foraging duck.
He’ll migrate soon, for the winter months
And survive, if he has good luck!

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“I have so many back home!” I cried
As we kept seeing European Black Kites.
Then, suddenly an Osprey appeared:
A dream come true in browns and whites!

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I just looked at the backyard.
No announcement. No knock.
He arrived…and left..so silently,
This European Peacock.

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Rescue and Release: The Slender Loris, Devarayana Durga State Forest, Tumkur District, 010514

May 2, 2014

I’ve been lucky enough to spot the

SLENDER LORIS

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at several places in Karnataka: the campus of the Indian Institute of Science, the Ramakrishna Mission Ashram at Shivanahalli, and at Nagavalli village, in Tumkur District.

Yesterday, we got a call from

B V Gundappa ,

affectionately called “Gundappa Sir” or “Gundappa Master” (he teaches in Nagavalli village), who has been caring for these shy, elusive creatures, and raising local awareness about them, so that they are not poached or killed.

Here are some facts about Slender Lorises, which are called “thEvAngu” in Tamizh, and “kAdupApA” (baby of the forest) in Kannada, from the wiki:

The gray slender loris (Loris lydekkerianus) is a species of primate in the family Loridae. It is found in India and Sri Lanka. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry forests and subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests. It is threatened by habitat loss.

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Despite the slew of studies on their behaviour and ecology in the last decade, they still remain among the least known of all primate species] Like other lorises, they are nocturnal and emerge from their roost cavities only at dusk.

They are mainly insectivorous. In southern India, the nominate race is often found in acacia and tamarind dominated forests or scrubs near cultivations. Males hold larger home ranges than females. They are usually solitary while foraging, and it is rare for them to be seen in pairs or groups. However they may roost in groups of up to 7, that include young of the recent and older litters. Adult males and females have individual home ranges and sleeping group associations are usually composed of a female and her offspring. They communicate with a range of vocalizations and also use urine and scent marking.

Although considered a Least Concern on the IUCN Red List and classified under Schedule I (Part 1) of the Indian Wildlife Act, 1972, the threat to these primates is increasing. Loris is used to make love potions, treat leprosy and eye ailments.Habitat fragmentation is also a threat to the loris population, as well as loss of acacia trees, which is a preferred tree species for the loris.

Well, that’s all the information. We were privileged to be able to see this animal in daylight!

Gundappa Master said that an adult male had been found in the home of a villager in Hebbur, about 11 km from his home. By the time we reached his place, he had rescued the creature and brought it home. It was decided to release the Loris in the heavy-foliage Devarayanadurga State Forest.

We were eager to take a look at the little fellow before we took him to the release area, and Gundappa Sir opened the shoe box in which he’d kept him, ready to be taken on his journey to freedom.

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An arm and a leg show themselves:

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At last, we could see the little primate. He didn’t seem stressed at all.

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Gundappa Sir sets off on the release. The sack contains a Bronzeback Tree Snake, also rescued from a village house, to be released.

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We went to the Devarayana Durga State Forest, and went into the interior area, away from the road. Here, in a rocky clearing, Gundappa Master opened the box again:

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Gundappa Master takes out the little primate on a twig.

Here it is, climbing around on the twig:

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In Tamizh, we say, “thEvAngu mAthiri muzhikkAthEy!” (Don’t stare at me like a Loris!)…now you can understand that!

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Yash (in the pic), Gopal and I took photos. Chandu was content to enjoy the moment.

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Gundappa Sir has been dealing with these animals for many years now, yet treats them with gentleness.

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He shows the animal on the twig; it’s an adult male, about two years old, he says. (I am asking in the video.)

In the video above, you can also see the Loris using its urine to wet its feet. Gundappa Sir said that this was partly territory marking behaviour, and partly to cool its feet. Something else that I learned about this creature!

He puts it on a small bush, first, and it looks around, getting its bearings:

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He finally releases the animal into a tree with plenty of foliage, where it proceeds to promptly hide itself:

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Off it goes:

Shortly after its release, the Kadupapa was hidden in the foliage. A pair of huge eyes looked out at us for a while..and then he was gone, the Baby of the Forest, elusive as ever.

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Here we are, trying to see whether it might be a leopard that is causing so much of alarm calls amongst the Hanuman Langurs around:

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Now we are satisfied (we didn’t see any leopard) and happy!

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Here’s a warm salute to Gundappa Sir and the beautiful animal he works to protect.

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Four videos from Valparai

April 23, 2014

I got the Orange-headed Thrush singing:

The Dusky Striped Squirrel calling:

The Grey Junglefowl, and his harem, strolling.

And….he life-giving summer rain falling:

Lion-tailed Macaques, Valparai, 18-200414

April 23, 2014

On Good Friday, Anjali, Gopal, Rohan, Tharangini, Yeshoda and I went to

Valparai

in the aNNAmalai range (Coimbatore district) in Tamil Nadu.

The

LION-TAILED MACAQUE

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was one of the several creatures we hoped to see on our trip to Valparai. The lion-tailed macaque (Macaca silenus), or the wanderoo, is an Old World monkey endemic to the Western Ghats of South India.

The hair of the lion-tailed macaque is black. Its outstanding characteristic is the silver-white mane which surrounds the head from the cheeks down to its chin, which gives this monkey its German name Bartaffe – “beard ape”

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it lives in hierarchical groups of usually 10 to 20 animals, which consist of few males and many females. It is a territorial animal, defending its area first with loud cries towards the invading troops.

It primarily eats indigenous fruits, leaves, buds, insects and small vertebrates in virgin forest, but can adapt to rapid environmental change in areas of massive selective logging through behavioural modifications and broadening of food choices to include fruits, seeds, shoots, pith, flowers, cones, mesocarp, and other parts of many nonindigenous and pioneer plants.

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The lion-tailed macaque ranks among the rarest and most threatened primates. Their range has become increasingly isolated and fragmented by the spread of agriculture and tea, coffee, teak and cinchona, construction of water reservoirs for irrigation and power generation, and human settlements to support such activities. They did not, in the past live, feed or travel through plantations, but this behaviour has changed.

Destruction of their habitat and their avoidance of human proximity have led to the drastic decrease of their population.

Here’s one swinging about on the wire:

It then proceeds to lick the raindrops off the leaves of the plant:

I loved watching this mother and child:

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Gestation is approximately six months. The young are nursed for one year. Sexual maturity is reached at four years for females, and six years for males. The life expectancy in the wild is approximately 20 years

Here’s a small, funny incident as a macaque jumps up as something bothers it, and starts running away:

Here’s one eating the seeds from the seed pod of the Spathodea (African Tulip), which is an exotic tree:

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I took a little more…

This troop of Macaques did forage and travel through the coffee plantation. They did not disturb us, and we did not disturb them.

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Here are a group, enjoying themselves (yes, that’s what I feel!) in the evening:

Visit to Nagavalli to see the Slender Loris, 050414

April 8, 2014

Gopal called me and asked if I’d like to go to Nagavalli village, in Tumkur District, where there is a colony of

Slender Lorises .

So off I went, though I had just returned from Hoskote lake!

As I got into the bus to join Gopal and friends, I saw this beautiful piece of artwork on the window!

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Here’s one cyclist, getting a free, if illegal, ride:

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We lost our way and reached Guleharavi, with this beautiful temple:

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The region is so beautiful, with plenty of trees:

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We stopped at Nagavalli village:

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At the High School, a sign about the Slender Loris was put up:

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We had pAni pUri and masAl pUri at this pushcart:

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Mr Gundappa, affectionately known as “Gundappa Master” (he is a teacher in the High School) came and met us.

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He led the way to the place where the Slender Loris could be found.

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This villager looked at us curiously, as we passed:

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Here’s Gundappa Master with us:

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We had arrived too early, and had to wait until dusk. Here we are: Davis, Gopal, Gundappa Master, Samrat and Tharangini:

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The area was beautiful and I walked along the road:

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Gundappa Master had a word or two with the villagers as they passed, including this man bringing his cattle green fodder:

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Meanwhile, I was looking at the birds, and got this

ORIENTAL MAGPIE ROBIN:

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In one field, a scarecrow guarded the crops:

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The sun sank westwards:

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It was gO dhUli lagna…the “hour of cowdust”..when the grazing cattle are brought home:

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As I walked further, I found a farmer setting fire to the area along the road:

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He told me that he was burning Lantana bushes:

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The sun and the fire made a good counterpoint:

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I was a little intrigued about why Lantana bushes should be set fire to at this time, but did not ask further.

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The sun set, shimmering in the heat waves from the fire:

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It seemed the whole sky was aflame:

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Manu, one of Gundappa Master’s assistants, brought us fresh cucumbers to crunch on!

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Meanwhile, Samrat entertained us with various amazing wildlife videos on his mobile:

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We began the walk into the fields to try and sight the “kAdupApA” as it is known locally:

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A half-moon shone overhead, along with the first few stars:

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We followed Gundappa Master as he went around, looking for the elusive mammals:

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We did manage to find two, but the shy creatures immediately retreated into the foliage, so photography was just not possible. We decided not to disturb them too much, and ended the trip into the fields.

On our way back, we saw this Russell’s Viper disappearing into the bushes:

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This brick cottage looked beautiful in the dim moonlight:

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We were happy with our sightings of the kAdupApA (baby of the forest), but decided that trying to see them was certainly causing them some disturbance and distress. So another trip is not likely!

click here

for my first visit to Nagavalli, on Oct 12, 2007, when I got a shot of this beautiful creature:

Kadupapa in the bushes 121007

For more photos of the evening,

click here

for my FaceBook album.

Gundappa master says that the group has increased in numbers. I will be talking to Ameen Ahmed,of Wildlife And Nature Conservation (WANC) and will find out the facts of this conservation effort.

Birds and other beings at Ganeshgudi :a video by Rana and Sugandhi

March 9, 2014

Something I’d like to share with all of you is this wonderful video by a couple who are good friends, Raghunath Belur and Sugandhi Gadadhar. The audio for this is a percussion “conversation” between different south Indian musical instruments that often form a part of a classical Carnatic music concert. Apart from the great visuals, they have very creatively incorporated this percussion passage, which, in my language (Tamizh) we call a “thani Avarthanam”.

After the flute,you hear the

MRIDANGAM , a south Indian classical music percussion instrument

alternating with the

TABLA , a north Indian pair of drums used in all forms of music.

They alternate to a diminuendo and then join in and build to a crescendo, after which the flute picks up the melody again and brings the thani Avarthanam to a conclusion that the creatures dance to!

It’s 3’14” long.

Ganeshgudi, in Karnataka, lies in the Western Ghats, with is a World Biodiversity hotspot, and all these birds can be seen in just a day or two.

Here’s a detailed list of what you see:

The opening music is that of the Malabar Whistling Thrush, which our foremost birder, Dr. Salim Ali, has dubbed the “Whistling Schoolboy”.

Cast in order of appearance:
# Malabar Pied Hornbill in flight
# Malabar Pied Hornbill feeding on fig
# Southern Birdwing butterfly – largest butterfly in Southern India
# Blue-eared Kingfisher
# White-rumped Shama
# White-bellied Blue Flycatcher
# Ruby-throated Bulbul and Oriental White-eye (top left)
# Malabar Trogon
# Cruiser butterfly
# Asian Paradise Flycatcher Male
# Black-naped Monarch
# Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher
# Forest Calotes
# Chocolate Pansy butterfly
# Draco (flying lizard)
# Unidentified moth
# Ground Skimmer dragonfly
# Green Bee-eater with dragonfly kill
# Crested Goshawk
# White-bellied Woodpecker
# Blue-capped Rock Thrush
# Yellow-browed Bulbul
# Crested Serpent Eagle
# Grey-headed Fish Eagle
# Grass Funnel Web Spider
# Rat snake
# Cruiser butterfly
# Malabar Barbet
# Oriental Magpie Robin
# Common Emerald Dove
# Unidentified Warbler
# Verditer Flycatcher
# Coppersmith Barbet
# Malabar Pied Hornbill (left: male, right: female)
# Indian Pitta
# Pompadour Green Pigeon
# Malabar Whistling Thrush
# Cruiser butterfly
# White-rumped Shama
# Orange-headed Thrush
# Five-ring butterfly (?)
# Southern Birdwing butterfly
# Blue-capped Rock Thrush
# Coppersmith Barbet
# Blue-capped Rock Thrush (female)
# Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher (female)
# Brown-Cheeked Fulvetta
# Blue-capped Rock Thrush
# White-bellied Blue Flycatcher
# Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher
# Indian Yellow Tit
# Brown-Cheeked Fulvetta
# White-rumped Shama
# Ruby-throated Bulbul
# Indian Yellow Tit
# Asian Paradise Flycatcher
# Indian Yellow Tit
# Purple Sunbird
# Ruby-throated Bulbul
# Forest Calotes
# White-bellied Blue Flycatcher
# Dark-fronted Babbler
# Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher
# Brown-Cheeked Fulvetta
# Blue-capped Rock Thrush
# Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher (female)
# Oriental White-eye
# Asian Paradise Flycatcher
# Yellow-browed Bulbul
# Hanuman Langur
# Malabar Giant Squirrel
# Indian Palm Squirrel
# Unidentied ants
# Malabar Trogon with kill
# Thrush (?)
# Ants – Pachycondyla rufipes
# Gladeye Bushbrown butterfly
# Great Hornbill
# Indian Pitta
# Malabar Pied Hornbill

Three wishes…and no more

February 24, 2014

I wish we were like birds, with the ability to fly.

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I wish we were like plants , to make food directly from the sun.

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I wish we were like other beings, never questioning why.

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But we are just human beings, so my wishing is over, and done!

Big Bird Day, Bannerghatta forest area, 160214

February 17, 2014

18 of us went together to cover the areas of Ragihalli, Bannerghatta Zoo area, Valley School and Vaderahalli Lake, to document the bird species and record their numbers. Here’s the photo that I took:

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And here’s one a passerby took of all of us:

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L to R: Murali, Anirudh, Saandip, Bhaskar, Mani, Gokul, Sindhu,Amit, Jayashree,YT, Kumuda, Santosh, Raghavendra, Skanda,Anjana,Gaurav,Shijo, Murugan.

Santosh explained the how-to’s to everyone during the MCS (Mandatory Chai Stop):

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We fanned out at Ragihalli koLA (pond)

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Brefus was after we covered the Zoo area, and at the Mayura, we all had masal dosas:

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This basket caught my eye:

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So did the birds…a

HOOPOE:

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a

RUFOUS WOODPECKER

which was working away at an ant’s nest. We thought it was simple predation, until I saw Prof. Raguram’s blogpost,

here

about the actual complexity and wonder of what really happens. Nature has such incredible complexities!

a

COMMON HAWK CUCKOO:

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a

SHIKRA

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a completely unafraid

JERDON’S BUSHLARK:

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I loved the affection between these two:

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What was the chance that these three were bird-watching? Nun!

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A

CRIMSON-TIP:

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My friend Kumuda wore this lovely top, and when she walked, the ladies with their pots of water sashayed along, too!

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You can see more photos on my FB album

here

Let me close with another image of the Bold Bushlark:

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