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Camera trapping

'Resilience personified'

Indian leopard is undoubtedly resilience personified. Whose mannerisms exude elegance. It survives against tough odds, and does it with solemn grace. 

'Leopard in concrete jungle'

A sub-adult male leopard from the outskirts of Sanjay Gandhi National Park in Mumbai, traverses the urban landscape cleverly using the darkness of the night.

'Ghost of Mumbai'
'Sensory prowess'

The leopard is in the city for the night. Sensory prowess of a leopard makes it a formidable nocturnal hunter. Leopards have vision which is 6-7 times better than humans, which makes seeing in the dark easily possible. Leopards have an acute sense of hearing and smell as well. Whiskers and paws of leopard have extremely sensitive receptors which gives them heightened spatial awareness.

'Stalk and ambush'

The Indian leopard is drawn to the city because of easy availability of prey. As the night grows darker, the leopard is on its prowl in dark alleyways and corners. It will stalk and patiently wait. A classic ambush predator.

Even with all its might and abilities, these leopards are very shy animals. They actively avoid any human interactions and keep their distance as much as possible. Unfortunately, once in a while, an attack does occur. Those too, are mostly human errors.

'Leopard with dog kill'

Bingo! The leopard catches a feral dog puppy. Strong jaws and sharp, long canines choke the prey’s throat. A recent study indicates that feral dogs make up considerable amount of the modern Indian leopard’s diet that lives around urban habitats. Even pigs and other domesticated animals are preferred as they are easy prey. This prey dependency on domesticated animals can be correlated to encroachment and bad waste management. Wild prey like deers and wild boars still form major portion of a leopard’s diet.

Mammals & Birds

Tigress on prowl
'Tigress on prowl'

Morning sunlight trickled through the teak forest. Gleaming leaves swayed with the cool wind. Birdsong had stopped and there was eerie silence, only to be disturbed by the metronomic alarm calls of spotted deer. The air felt heavier with anticipation, the langurs hurried to the tallest of branches. Then from the thicket she walked out in all her grace. The tigress was on her prowl.

'Garden Raptor 1'

A juvenile black kite descends down for a quick sip from the bird bath in my garden.

'Garden raptor 2'

A Five-striped palm squirrel leaps between branches nonchalantly going about its usual day.
The squirrel jumps here, literally forming an image of a bridge, a skybridge.

'Five-striped palm squirrel'
'One winter morning with a tigress'

One pleasant winter morning, a cat crossed my path. We searched and tracked every possible sign for a mere glimpse of her, only to chance upon a minute long encounter, on her terms. A brief moment when time slowed down and all the senses heightened. She walked with an elegant gait, putting forward each paw with purpose through the dew-laden forest carpet glistening in the rich morning light. Her stately presence commanded attention, her aura owned the moment. She walked past unperturbed, leaving my nerves unsettled with contentment.

'A sunrise at Bharatpur'

A flock of Common Coot taking off at sunrise.

'Darter in flight'
'Darter preying on fish'
'Dalmatian Pelicans'

Dalmatian Pelicans on a misty morning in Bharatpur. Dalmatians are the largest pelicans, and have one of the largest wingspans in the bird kingdom

'Dalmatian Pelican'

A lone Dalmatian Pelican traversing the wetlands of Bharatpur.

'Three is a crowd'

A Great Egret flanked by two Painted Storks.

'Nosy Neighbour'

A red-whiskered bulbul brings in material to build its nest in my bedroom window.

'Indian Roller'
'Indian Gaur'
'Ruddy Mongoose'
'Ruddy Mongoose'

A Spotted owlet scans the surroundings from its hollow.

'Indian Scops Owl'

This incredibly well camouflaged Indian Scops Owl peeks out from its hollow. Spotting them even if they're right in front of you can become a task sometimes. They mostly inhabit forested areas but can sometimes be found near human habitation as well.

'Grey Langur'
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