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Archive for the ‘monsoon’ Category


Monsoon is not the best time for sighting wildlife, or so is the belief. Monsoon is also not the ideal time for photography. But wildlife always throws surprises.

Butch and I were not keen on any particular sighting, but wished to see a pack wild dogs (at least after learning about a pack of 31). Ramesh was our driver on the first day’s evening safari. Half an hour into the safari we saw 3-4 jeeps coming from the opposite direction. They had seen a tiger cross and said they were expecting it to cross this path (one that leads to Subrayana katte). I asked Ramesh to take jeep in reverse without starting it. I didn’t want other jeeps to go ahead and block our view, and didn’t want the tiger to be disturbed because of our jeep’s noise.

Butch and I were sitting at the rear end of the Commander. Just as the jeep moved, a tiger emerged out of the thick lantana bushes right next to our jeep. She was right next to us, not more than 7 to 8 feet. I clicked an image, and realized she was too close. As I zoomed out, couple of other jeeps that were behind ours moved towards her out of the jeep track, overtaking our jeep. She turned back for a moment that i missed to click as i zoomed out to get her in the frame. She strolled away from us, scent marked on a tree and slipped into the bushes. The sighting lasted about 25 seconds, but the closeness was surreal. Rest of the safari was spent in tracking her to a waterhole, where she didn’t appear.

Monday morning safari started with sighting of few wild dogs on the highway. They were moving inside, towards tavare katte. It’s not easy to miss a pack of 31 wild dogs even if you have little idea of their movement. We caught up with them within 15min. The alpha dogs attempted to make a kill of Sambar fawn, which swan to the middle of the lake. Realizing that the effort was not worth, the pack leaders moved on follwed by sub adults and older pups of the pack.

Sub-adults and pups waiting for alpha dogs to make a kill

We were sure they will make a kill soon. Within minutes we saw a stag emerge out of bushes, chased by alpha female. She stopped momentarily seeing the jeeps. Taking this chance the stag crossed the road and scampered for an exit. Since there were only 3 jeeps, the dogs were comfortable and had enough space for themselves. The pack leader chased down the stag, faster than a sprinter.

Dholes start eating the prey while it is still alive

Stag was trying to gore the dog with his antlers, but the agility of the dog dodge him and made quick bites. Within seconds we could see the flesh and blood from the rear of the deer. The lead dog was joined by another. One caught the stag by neck and the other started eating from the rear. There is nothing clean or swift about this kill. Each bite will rip piece of flesh from the prey.

The action was simply incredible to watch. No photograph makes justice to the scene i witnessed. Soon, the deer was dead and another dog pulled the carcass inside the bushes.

Can’t describe the pain in the eyes of the deer

Little ahead on the road, the rest of the pack were waiting for the alpha dogs to arrive. Soon after the kill, the alpha female came to invite the rest of the pack for breakfast. She was so well greeted by her pups. They all strolled behind the bushes towards the deer carcass. We left them to have their breakfast in peace.


I was not asking for anything more. But we still had two safaris. The best part of Bandipur is that you are not disappointed even if you don’t sight a tiger. There are many other creatures that catch your eye, especially in monsoon. A Peacock was  trying to impress a mate. The dance and the way he put up the show was a treat to watch. If he were a guy, women would throw themselves at him.

A Peafowl dancing to impress his better half

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Common Hoopoe

Stripe-necked mongooses are commonly found in Bandipur. Here’s one on his daily routine of finding beetles and other insects for a quick meal.

Commonly found Stripe-necked Mongoose

Bandipur has a variety of woodpeckers. Before we sighted the tiger, we were enjoying the sight of a female streak-throated woodpecker, who was soon joined by her better half. Monsoon is the season of love in the wild.

Female Streak-throated Woodpecker

Mr. & Mrs. Streak-throated Woodpecker


Yawnnn…..

Red-wattled Lapwings are common around waterholes and open grass areas of Mulapura.

Red-wattled Lapwing


Crested Serpent Eagle preening

This is only an indication of what one can find in Bandipur. Go, enjoy the rains!

P.S.: This trip was from 6th June to 8th June 2010.  I tried to restrict the number of images, but couldn’t resist posting these many.

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North East Monsoon

The increase in the temperature i felt in Bangalore after coming back from Coorg was making me uncomfortable. ‘Feels like summer’ i uttered, walking to lunch in the scorching sun.

I read a news article that the rise in temperature at the end of South-West monsoon before the onset of North-East monsoon was usual, and higher the rise in temperature more the downpour would be. Couldn’t agree more, after the showers on Wednesday night.

I left office by about 9pm, there was no hint of rain in Indiranagar at that time. The roads were relatively free of traffic, i reached the Queens road in about 10 minutes. I could see the wet roads there, ‘it must have rained heavily here’ i thought. Still cruising smoothly i reached Race course road. Light drizzle started by that time. As i neared Shivananda Circle, heavy showers lashed. The downpour was nothing like i had seen in quite few years. Roads were jammed. Riders taking shelter in the available spaces, under trees and bus stops, parking their two-wheelers haphazardly on road added more woes to the traffic. I rode in the pouring showers, my nike jacket and Starflash helmet providing enough protection. My low ankle Adidas shoes were drenched in rising water as i moved crawling in the snail paced traffic.

The water was about 1 feet at the underpass near Ceegees. The ride was really bumpy with uneven manholes covers, potholes, and ditches. The Barapole at some parts had lesser water and rafting was less bumpy! The picture below shows an Accent near that place.

rain.png

The downpour was more stable past this place, but the arterial roads in central Bangalore were still chocked with Cars, Buses, and two-wheelers. Finally i reached home, totally drenched.

North East monsoon arrives, cooler Bangalore until summer. :)

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