Saturday, September 26, 2009

Krishna comes from Delhi, 16 September 09

Krishna's train came into Coimbatore at 5:45am, three hours down the mountain from Boys Company. We hadn't seen her for almost a year, so it was good to see her.Krishna and I in the taxi from Coimbatore to Boys Company, up the mountain
After a week, we decided to take a trip to Ooty and Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary. Here is a picture of the tea estates en route to Ooty.

Mariama and I on a boat on Ooty Lake

After Ooty, we decided to head toward Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, stopping here at 9-Mile which is a hill with a wonderful view. Here I am with Mariama and our driver, Rajan.

Rajan with Gopal

Krishna and Rajan

Monkeys near the car at 9-Mile (in fact, we had muddy monkey footprints on the taxi windshield)

From 9-Mile, we went on to Pykara Falls.

It is impossible for Krishna to stay out of the water, so here she is with her feet in.

In front of "my house." This old house is now abandoned, but it must have been wonderful since it overlooks these falls and the lake.

Driving through the mountain to Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, we passed this outlook.

"The Famous Mudumalai wild life Sanctuary is situated at an elevation of 1000 meters and extending over an area of 321 sq.kmts lies this sanctuary between Kerala and Karnataka states. This is one of India's best sanctuaries. Nature has been lavish in providing this sanctuary with thickly wooded hills, plateaus, deep valleys, waterfalls, rivers, marshes and streams. The varied flora and topography meet the ecological requirements of several species in habitating the sanctuary and give the visitors a sense of satisfaction.The vegetation is quite varied in this region. The hilly terrain of the Western Ghats, clothed in dense mixed and moist deciduous forests, make Mudumalai (the ancient hills) a most attractive wildlife reserve. Bamboos (Bambusa Arundinacea) Natural teak (Tectona Grandis), Anogeissus latifolia, Terminalia, Crenulata/Terminalia Tomontosa, Grewia, and blooming trees like Indian Labumusum, Aredesia, Solanancea are some of the flora. The fauna include Elephants, Gaur, Banner, Macaque, Common Langur, Tigers, Leopards, Chital, Panther, Sloth Bear, Python, Barking Deer, Four Horned Antelope, Otter, Crocodiles (Mugger), Giant Flying Squirrel, Sambar, Hyena, Wild Dog, Wild Boar, Mouse Deer, Spotted Deer, Jackal, Hare, Porcupine and Mongoose. The birds listed in this sanctuary are Peacock-our National bird, Grey Jungle Fowl, Red Spur Fowl, Grey Partridge Quails, Goggle Eyed Plower, Malabar Whistling Thrush, Large Racket-Tailed Dronge, The Magpie-robin, Spotted Babbler, Small Green Barbet, Green Pigeons, Brown Dove, Malabar Grey Hornbill, Bulbuls, Mynahs, etc. Among birds of prey, Eagles, Hawks, Buzzards, Harriers, Falcons and King Vulture are predominant, besides some migratory water birds."

"Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary & National Park is situated at the tri-junction of the three southern states of Tamilnadu, Kerala, and Karnataka. Mudumalai wildlife reserve is a continuation of the Bandipur National Park. It was the first sanctuary in South India and established in the year 1940. It covers an area of 321 Sq. Km. comprising of pristine tropical wilderness. The place is rich in its bio-diversity especially the avifauna (Birds). The river Moyar that flows along the border or Tamil Nadu and Karnataka separates the two. The Mysore - Ooty highway runs through the park.
"It is included as part of the Nilgiri Bio-sphere reserve which is the first of its kind to be declared as a bio-sphere reserve in the country. A variety of habitats ranging from Tropical Evergreen forest, Moist mixed deciduous, Moist Teak forest, Dry teak forest, Secondary grass lands, Shrubs and Swamps exists here. The bird diversity in these habitats is unbelievably rich and is a welcoming place for bird watchers from far and wide. This park harbours over 200 species of birds from 48 families and is one of the richest bird areas in the State of Tamilnadu. Some of the rarely seen Birds of prey like the rufous bellied hawk eagle can be occasionally seen in this sanctuary. Nights are fascinating especially during the month of April, when the whole sanctuary is illuminated with millions of glow worms. "

At Mudumalai, we saw an elephant, these Cheetal (spotted deer) (sorry you can't see them well), Common Langor (black-faced money), Sloth Bear (barely), and Peacock (Indian state bird). We saw some from our taxi and some from a Mudumalai tour bus.

All day we had been blessed with gorgeous light and views. After all these inspiring nature views, our ride home was poetically beautiful.

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