Monday, August 8, 2011

Life in abundance

Monsoon is the life-line of Western Ghats. It not only transforms the land into a green carpet but also enriches the life forms during that time. 

One can see various types of wild flowers, vividly colorful mushrooms, richly green ferns and a rich number of other life forms like frogs, insects, cicadas and various other critters. With abundant food available it is no less than a festival time for the predators!

Last time on my visit to Jenukal Gudda, near Yellapur, I had a nice encounter with a Green Vine Snake. That was the first and the only time I photographed a Green Vine alive! Though I have been seeing this species of snake ever since my childhood, it rarely showed up since the time I started the photography. Hence I was excited to shoot this guy and he obliged happily.

During this year's Western Ghats trip in July I was expecting this species of snake to show up in one or the other place we visited. I always had my eyes open to find this one but all went in vein.
In all the places there were cicadas, frogs and other insects abundantly rich in number but there was no sign of a Green Vine.

With forest fragmented due to the construction of roads and highways these snakes have a constant pressure to sometime cross the road in order to find food or mate. That makes them vulnerable not only to the fast moving vehicles but also to their predators. These guys are masters in camouflaging. You just cannot find them once they are into some green shrubs or a tree. It is just next to impossible to find them if they don't move and they know that! For such a camouflaged guy it is nothing less than a disaster to come on the bare surface of a tar road where he is easily visible from anywhere. It is like getting onto a battlefield...unarmed!

Road kills are common across the Western Ghat region. During monsoons there is no surprise if the number goes high. The forests and its fringes will be filled with food and life and the grass looks greener on the other side of the road (!), which tempts guys like these to venture out into the bare tar roads and to cross them in desperacy!

The results are disastrous many times. We were a witness to one such road kill during this year's trip in July. It feels terribly sad to see such a charmingly beautiful creature lying flat on the road dead with its inside out!

No cheers,


Santosh said...

The monsoons brings about a whiff of fresh air, some kind of energies into us and all kinds of life forms are brought into life and the sad stories do continue...
Its sad to see such a lovely creature ending up this way!

Pramod Viswanath said...

Amazing write up and am feeling sad for the lost soul :(

Some of the images are amazing and last image is a perfect candidate for next year's Dash dash!!

Chandu said...

the top most image stands out! The addition of Out of foucs leaves/twigs(i assume) really added beauty to this little beauty

Chetana Hegde said...


Absolutely in love with colours!

I am in love with the colour green in the 1st photo.. What a colour! Amazing!

Loved the little blue in the 5th photo! Ofcourse the focus was your g.vine guy :( The presence of Omni makes it symbolic and apt for that photo... I would have loved tons if it were just blue, green and the tar..

Good work, keep it up.

Chetana Hegde said...


I was just revisiting your photos, and I could see a different things :)

The 1st photo looked like a flower bud oblique to some 75 or so degrees :)
Continuing in the same line of thought, in 2nd photo, had the g.vine guy was in unison with the stem next to him, it would have looked like a green flower in bloom, what is the exact word in English to 'aralida haage'. That is what I mean :)

(I have all feelings that he is dead in 4th pic) It looks as though a pipe with runny water in it has got twisted. Nango heltvali, ....'ye pipe tirupiddu, sari maadu' heli...., hange helvana kaanta iddu...

Ok, bfn :)