On Sunday, we headed towards Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary, some 40 kms away. In this pleasant weather, picnickers are out in the open making the most of the weather, and off we went too, for what is hopefully, the first picnic of the season. The day was hazy and it shows in many of the photos. Many of the trees were bare as seen in the first photo.
Please click on all images for a better view.
Besides tea and the mighty river Brahmaputra, Assam is also known as the home of the one-horned rhino (Rhinoceros unicornis). Although the sanctuary is spread over an an area of 38.8 square kms, it has the highest concentration of rhinos as compared to other sanctuaries in the state. With the day being hazy, I couldn't get a clearer shot and we were told by the guards not to venture into the grassland. This shot was taken from the road bordering the park.
The small water bodies in the picture attract several birds. Birds of the heron family dominated the water whereas the skies were for migratory birds, mainly Siberian cranes which flock to warmer climes in winter.
Another view of where the Rhinoceros roam.....
The Spider flowers (Cleome spinosa) were in full bloom. I'd never seen cleome growing so abundantly in the wild. There were many butterflies and a few dragonflies near the blooms.
On the edge of this water body too... A prominent feature of the great wide floodplains of the Brahmaputra valley is a water body of this type known as "beels". These low-lying depressions are fed by rain and floodwaters during the monsoon. Rich in aquatic life, they are a source of food to man and animals. Many villages in areas near these "beels" depend on them for a constant supply of fish. The Peacock Pansy (Junonia almana). This is a stunning butterfly with the spotted pattern on the wings. This species is native to India, Pakistan, Burma and Sri Lanka.
After lunch we went boating. Took this shot from the boat. Sunsets cannot be missed...just look at that colour!
As we passed colourful clumps of cleome and flocks of parrots pecking at wild berries, huge flocks of Siberian cranes came to roost on these trees. The sunlight was no longer strong and I could only manage to capture these beautiful creatures sihouetted against a fading light.
Like I said earlier, these birds dominated the Pobitora skyline. I'd read about these birds coming here during winter but I'd never seen them. We had no plans of going to Pobitora. We wanted to be together somewhere in the great outdoors. Not everybody liked the first spot and that's how we reached a place so rich in flora and fauna. Needless to say we all came back happy with how it all went.
Glory be to God for dappled things- For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow; For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim; Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches' wings; Landscape plotted and pieced--fold, fallow, and plough; And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim. All things counter, original, spare, strange; Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?) With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim; He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: Praise him. Gerard Manley Hopkins
The first flowering shrub I planted on our land
Every flower is a soul blooming in Nature.-Gerard De Nerval
Shall I not have intelligence with the earth? Am I not partly leaves and vegetable mould myself? -Henry David Thoreau