Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The dominant male - Agasthya.

The dominant male in the Bandipur forest range - Agasthya.

The below mentioned images were made on 10th, October 2009 during the Bangalore Photography Workshop's Wildlife Photography Workshop held at Bandipur.

One of the best holidays of 2009.

PONDICHERRY - a must visit "again" for sure.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Canon Big Shot Photo Contest. July 2009

I take immense pleasure in saying that I was awarded the 1st Prize (Canon 70-200mm L series USM lens) for my submission in the wildlife photography category for the Canon Big Shot contest.
The award ceremony was presided by Mr.Anil Kumble & Mr.Anand Sharan who was the judge for the contest.
My images will be on display at the Canon Image Lounge, Brigade tower,Brigade road, Bangalore for the coming month.

In the news :


Few images made at the award ceremony

The golden moment !

Unveiling the winners' images.

Mr.Anand Sharan was the judge of the contest.

Mr.Anil Kumble as the Chief Guest.

Me with Mr.Anil Kumble & Dipti (my better half).

Photo talk.

Me with the winners panel.

The award winning image.

My special thanks to Canon for organising the contest, Mr.Anand Sharan for judging the entries, Mr.Anil Kumble for presiding over the ceremony, Mr.Manjunath.P for introducing & guiding me into the wonderful world of bird photography, my family for all the support & not to forget the eagle & the snake !!!

Ramanagara. July 2009

These images were made on 12th July 2009 @ Ramadevara Betta, one of Ramanagara's famous rocky outcrops.

Ramanagara known as Closepet, after Sir Barry Close (1756–1813), in pre-Independence times and retained in geology is a town and a city municipal council in the Indian state of Karnataka. It is approximately 60 km southwest of Bangalore. It has an average elevation of 2450 feet.

These hills have been threatened by quarrying and also plans to carve these hills into statues. The region is covered in scrub forest and is home to threatened bird species such as the Yellow-throated Bulbul and Long-billed vultures also known as Indian Vultures.The hill is today one of the few locations in south India where Long-billed Vultures nest.

The Indian Vulture, Gyps indicus, is an Old World Vulture. It is closely related to the European Griffon Vulture.

It breeds on crags or in trees in mountains inPakistan & India, laying one egg. Like other Vulturesit is a scavenger, feeding mostly from carcasses of dead animals which it finds by soaring over savannah and around human habitation. They often move in flocks.

The Long-billed Vulture is a typical vulture, with a bald head, very broad wings and short tail feathers. Usually weighing between 5.5 and 6.3 kg and measuring 80–100 cm long and 205 to 229 cm (81–91 in) across the wings.

Diclofenac poisoning

The Indian Vulture have suffered a 99%–97% population decrease in Pakistan & India and the cause of this has been identified as poisoning caused by the veterinary drug diclofenac. Diclofenac is a non-steroidal anti inflammatory drug(NSAID) and when given to working animals it can reduce joint pain and so keep them working for longer. The drug is believed to be swallowed by vultures with the flesh of dead cattle which were given diclofenac in the last days of life. Diclofenac causes kidney failure in several species of Vultures.

Captive breeding programmes

Captive-breeding programmes for several species of Indian vulture have been started. The vultures are long lived and slow in breeding, so the programmes are expected to take decades. Vultures reach breeding age at about 5 years old. It is hoped that captive-bred birds will be released to the wild when the environment is clear of diclofenac.

We also found this guy - Egyptian vulture. There were 4 of them soaring.

Ramanagara is frequented by birdwatchers, photographers, rock climbers & other nature enthusiasts.

How to get to Ramanagara ?

Southwest of Bangalore.
Take the Bangalore-Mysore road.
50kms from Bangalore you will reach Ramanagara.
On the right you will have to ask directions for Ramadevara betta.
Take the road to Ramadevara betta & drive for about 6 kms & halt.
Get off your sedan & look for kaal daaris !

Thursday, June 25, 2009

T.G.Halli reservoir. June 2009

Made this trip on 24th June 2009 along with Apana, we hit the road by 5.00am & reached by 6.15am. My motive of this trip was to try my hands on HDR (High Dynamic Range) images & panoramic shots to implement in creating a QTVR (Quick Time Virtual Reality) mentored by AB Apana. It was his images which sparked the interest in me to try HDR & QTVR.

Down below are a few shots & a movie file made during this trip using my Canon 30D + Canon 100-400 IS L series lens + tripod & a few handheld shots of the common's.

My first HDR image....................sunrise at TG Halli.

View of the reservoir. (HDR image)

Some shots of the common's.


The Agama - male.

The Agama - female.

Brahminy Kite.

Can you spot me ? ............... Little Ringed Plover.

Little Grebe.

Grey Herons.
The saying goes "Birds of a same feather flock together".

Little Cormorant basking & preening.

Little Egret in breeding plumage.

One more Little Egret in flight.

Comments & critics appreciated.

Driving directions to TG Halli.

Take the Magadi road.
You will pass Sunkadakatte.
Then you will reach Tavarekere.
From here its about 7kms to TG Halli dam gate.
Its one straight road from the beginning of Magadi road.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Mydanahalli. June 2009

As planned, I made this trip to Mydanahalli which houses the Blackbuck Santuary with Manjunath, Apana & Nitin.
All of us were ready by 3.45am on 21st June 2009 at my residence & by 4.10am we hit the road, there was a moderate chill in the weather & the roads were something which one can't complain.
It was a smooth drive & we did not have any problems reaching the sanctuary as this was my second time. We were there by 7.30AM, after a 125kms drive.
Just before entering we made a quick stop to catch up on some home made sandwiches & tea, while we were indulging in a quick bite we met Mr.Gundappa who is a school teacher & the current Chairman of Tumkur based conservation group Wildlife Aware Nature Club (W.A.N.C), the man behind the conservation of the Slender Loris at Nagavalli village.

Down below are a few stock shots made during this trip using my Canon 30D + Canon 100-400 IS L series lens + handheld.

The safari begins......................

We were greeted by this handsome fellow.

The distinctive horns of the Blackbuck are ringed with 1 to 4 spiral turns, rarely more than 4 turns, and can be as long as 28 inches (79cm).

On the open plain, the Blackbuck is one of the fastest animals and can outrun most predators over long distances. Its chief predator was the now extinct Indian Cheetah. It is now sometimes preyed upon by wolves, feral dogs, etc.

The light-brown female is usually hornless. Blackbucks usually roam the plains in herds of 15 to 20 animals with one dominant male.

This guy was one of the biggest I have ever seen.

The diet of the Blackbuck consists mostly of grasses, although it does eat pods, flowers and fruits to supplement its diet. The maximum life span recorded is 16 years and the average is 12 years.

Like most wild animals, the Blackbuck is in principle protected in India by the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972. Their conservation status is Near Threatened (NT).

Detailed Directions to Mydanahalli.

Take Tumkur highway (NH4), do not enter Tumkur.
At Dabbaspete junction you will approach a flyover, please do not go on the fly over.
Take the road on the left of the flyover, go ahead & go across the flyover, you will hit a fork-take the left one.
Continue on this road till you reach Madhugiri.
Continue till you reach Puravara Village - around 17 kms
From here, continue on the main road for around 8 kms till you reach a temple on your left.
Slow down, go about a kilometer further and you will see a tar road bifurcating to the left.

Take left here, continue for about a kilometer to reach another Y junction, take the right arm.
Continue on this for 1 km (you will pass a village, stay on the tarred road)You will observe a wide path.
The tarred road bends left here.
Get on to the un-tarred road to begin your safari !!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Kabini. May 2009

Had been planning for long to get to Kabini, finally it happened on 29th May, 2009. Being a holiday season it was next to impossible to get bookings at the Jungle Lodges also to add to the commotion was the spotting of Tiger & Leopard on a day to day basis past April 2009 had been attracting an army of wildlife enthusiasts. This trip was made possible by a friend (Devendra SK) who managed to get the booking.
We were at the Jungle Lodges for one night which included accomodation, food & 2 safaris. I would rate the safari at Kabini JLR the best in south india, this is keeping the following factors in mind :
1. The most liveliest, beautiful & wild jungle.
2. The vehicle condition & seating arrangement being really good.
I really do not want to comment on the naturalist & the driver.

Down below are a few stock shots made during this wild trail using my Canon 30D + Canon 100-400 IS L series lens + handheld.

On the first safari we were greeted by a mock charge by 3 elephants & a tusker calf. This was one of my first elephant charge experience. The trumpeting, foot banging, the anger ....phew....... had never thought that such calm creatures could showcase this behaviour.

One more of the charge sequence................this went on for more than 30 mins & in no time we realised that we were surrounded by a total number of 7 pachyderms.

the common's showed up in herd's as usual

one more of the common's

the above image is made at the back waters & is localy known as Maasti Katte, supposedly this is the place which used to host Asia's largest congregation of elephant's numbering to more than 500 !!!
Wish I knew what happened.......