Understanding India: Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
It was like a scene from Jurassic Park. Our group piled into a boat with bench seats and a canopy, each of us accessorized with some combination of cameras, tripods, monopods, go pros and life vests. One man rowed us in between small islands, all occupied by exotic and unusual birds. Crocodiles sunbathed on giant, half submerged stones, and bats swung lazily from tree branches.
At one point our boat captain, rower, and steerer saddled us up right next to a mother crocodile resting on one of the stones. Everyone in the boat shifted, avoiding the edge where surely if provoked the mama would snap. I kept my distance while my peer Austin eagerly held out a gopro trying to get a close up shot of the smiling croc. There was nervous laughter as we pulled away, noticing that the oarsman almost smacked the giant croc on the tail.
The river Cauvery carved and created a cool, relaxing place for all species. Even monkeys calmly sauntered over the land as we made our way through the park. Under the shade of taffy pulled trees and in between breezes we all marveled at this place, a unique natural habitat.
“The sanctuary is quite popular both among Indian and foreign tourists. Apart from home to native avian habitants, the sanctuary each year attracts a large number of migratory birds. Wildlife experts believe that migratory birds come to this sanctuary as far as from Siberia, Australia and even North America.
Some of the birds you come across on your birding tour to Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary include snake bird, darters, spoonbills, river tern, open bill storks, white Ibis, little cormorants, egret, heron, stone plougher, kingfisher and partridge.” (Read more)
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
Around the Coffee Plantation
Elephant Camp Pt. 1
Elephant Camp Pt. 2
King of Cobras
Kuppalli and Kuvempu
We were in India to complete the filming of the documentary Elephants in the Coffee. And now it’s done. It explores the elephant-human conflict that has been happening in India. The coffee you drink has most likely been wandered through by elephants. They are a nuisance to farmers, but also a god in the Hindu belief. You cannot destroy a god. But you can scare it off with crackers and shotgun blasts. The elephant habitat is shrinking. In its place villages and farms have moved in. Elephants walk the same paths they have for hundreds of years, even if houses, crops, or people stand in their way. How could anyone stop them? Electric fences, trenches and steel beams have been used and are being used to keep them out and keep people safe. Nobody wants a god wandering through their crops eating their jack fruit, trampling their livelihood. But a god cannot be stopped.