I was going to strictly stay at home, and do my packing and preparation for the trip to BR Hills tomorrow. So naturally, when Gopakumar called and asked if I would come with (alphabetical order) , and Peeyush, of course I immediately said yes! I'd been wanting to meet Gopa for a long time, and he'd told me that his daughter Madhumita had come with us to BR Hills (the Valley School trip.) So...ditch the pending work, and off I go! Any invitation to Bannerghatta forest...unthinkable to turn it down, especially with such company!
As usual, the day started with fog and mist…here is, I am not kidding…the sun!
Everyone appeared grey....
But the sun did break through, and out came our binoculars!
It was lovely to see the early light on the dewdrops, on the cactus:
Here are the others, on the rocks of Ragidevara Betta:
Here's Vishnu, who gave us access to Camp Gee Dee, so that we could climb the betta (hillock)
On the way back, we spotted two lovely sights: one, this vendor of shiny brass and bronze vessels:
and the beautiful way in which the walls of this house have been built, the traditional way, with stacked-up stone:
The tradition dates back several thousand years, when these dolmens were built up on the rock face: the bodies were set upon the rock face, and the top slab, held on load bearing granite pieces, was built up in a similar fashion, to form a burial site:
On the timeless (the rocks, called Peninsular Gneiss, are among the oldest exposed rock in the world) surface, the
PENINSULAR ROCK AGAMAS
bask in the sunshine:
Another reptile we spotted was the
We saw an ants' nest on the way up:
Butterflies included this
(not sure) PLUM JUDY (correct my id if it's wrong)
BUSH BROWN (again, not sure)
Tiny insects included these
this un id
and this beautiful
We looked at several interesting trees, ranging from the Indian Laburnum, to the tree from the wood of which the Chennapatna toys are made. (Gopa, I want the scientific name of it once again!)
This un id wildflower looked beautiful in the sunlight:
We found the winged seeds of the
Holarrhena antidysenterica tree:
I didn't photograph too many birds, but this
was a great sighting, first soaring above us, and then sitting on a far-off tree, eating its prey:
actually started us off!
Another lovely sighting was this
BLACK DRONGO in its iridiscent black plumage...it's sitting on top of a cow (the full photo is in the Picasa album, link below.)
Here are the bird and other lists:
Barbet, Small Green
Bee-eater, Small Green
Buzzard, Oriental Honey
Leafbird, (not clear)
Robin, Oriental Magpie
Un id Raptor
Yellow, Grass, various
Beetles, Crickets, Dragonflies, Grasshoppers, Spiders
For more pics,
I’m sure the others will produce even better pics, just wait for the links! A wonderful morning…. I came home only by 1pm! Gopa’s breakfast offering of two loaves of bread and cheese spread was wolfed down, but we then called him a “double loafer”. Vishnu hospitably offered us welcome cups of chai and fruit juice and a nice chat, too.
Having never really caught up with the work afterwards, and having to go out the entire evening….I am, of course, sitting and making this post instead of packing my bag for BR Hills tomorrow!
Oooh, I love Bannerghatta forests….