Monday, 14 July 2014

Sightings @ Nagarhole.

This is the continuity of Wildlife treat @ Jungle Retreat.
I knew Nagarhole forest gates would close by 6 PM, and no vehicles would be allowed to enter the range after that. So we started from Thirunelli by 530 PM and reached the forest gates by 6 PM. After signing off the ledger we entered the park.
Initially there were no big sightings apart from handsome stags and deer. However, as we crossed few kms, grasslands to our left which is considered to be happening place gave us some results. Couple of Sambhar deer were grazing peacefully. 

Next sighting was the infamous Wild Dholes. Wild Dogs or Wild Dholes are predominant in these regions. Their activities such as hunting, travelling from one place to another will always be in a group. Mostly called as Wild Packs consists least of 6 dogs with an alpha male which leads the pack. Atleast 5 dogs were resting under bamboo shades. I guess they had finished their meal for the day.

Wild Dhole.
Wild Dhole.
We continued further till the range forest office, huge crowd had gathered already for evening safari. Vehicles were parked indecently. Guards were trying their best to streamline them. Soon after, we continued our journey.
It was about 645 PM when we reached Moorkal quarters. Just behind the forest quarters I heard a big splash.! Herd of Asiatic Elephants had come for a dip. Fortunately, the guards noticed them too and started clearing the traffic which was piling up. I started taking snaps without stepping out from the car.

First Splash.!
There were atleast 10 jumbos in that group. After a brief dip they started to dig mud. It was a treat to watch the actions live..! Crowd who already had gathered started making unnecessary noise, I started worrying if jumbos would get agitated. 

Adult jumbos lead the team, sub-adults followed them promptly. On the banks, adult elephant started digging mud and sprayed it on its body. Little jumbos did the same thing.
Elephants normally mud-bath to prevent insect attack. The mud acts like a coating on their sensitive skin.

Ready for a Mudbath.
The experience was truly wild..! Couple of trumpets alerted other members of the herd, soon after that the group started dispersing into the thick jungle.
I was fortunate to witness this bath ceremony for solid 20 mins. By the time we started from that place, it was 10 mins past 7 PM. With an amazing collections of sightings and cherish-able memories we returned to Bengaluru.

Details of Nagarhole National Park:
Distance from Bengaluru: 240 Kms.
Park Timings: 6 AM to 6 PM.
Directions from Bengaluru :  Bengaluru >> Mysore Road >> Srirangpatna >> KRS Road >> Hunsur Road >> Hunsur >> Nagarhole.
NNP safari timings : 6AM -8AM and 3PM-6PM. (Only Bus Safaris). For Gypsy Safari, reservations will be done @ Aranya Bhavana, Bengaluru.
Possible Sightings : Malabar Giant Squirrels, Asiatic Elephants, Spotted Chitals, Sambhar Deer, Barking Deer, Peafowls, Wild Boars, Sloth Bears, Tigers, Indian Leopards, Wild Dholes, Indian Gaurs.

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