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Arjuna, the Elephant

13-12-2018published_dt 2018-12-13T08:35:00.321Z13-12-2018 14:05:00 IST
Updated On 13-12-2018 14:06:55 ISTmodified_dt 2018-12-13T08:36:55.197ZUpdated On 13-12-20182018-12-13T08:35:00.321Z13-12-2018 2018-12-13T08:35:00.321Z - 2018-12-13T08:36:55.197Z - 13-12-2018

 

The flame lit in Bandhavgarh is still burning in me. My passion and love for forest and wildlife pulled me out from my routine and took me to Nagarhole National Park Tiger Reserve, on the banks of Kabini river in Karnataka. 

It is a beautiful jungle. Rich in spotted deer and bird life. I have never seen so many spotted deer in my life. They are everywhere in this forest. In hordes. Beautiful faces, keen ears and liquid eyes. It's more than a week since I came away from them. But I still see them in front of my eyes. Their graceful movements and innocent looks are fresh in my mind. The naturalist who accompanied us showed us a lot of birds and langurs and insects, and trees.

Like in Bandhavgarh, the big cat eluded me here too. Two safaris did not bring us a sighting of the tiger or a leopard. We saw a pug mark though. Fresh one. Indicating that the tiger crossed the road just a while ago. The naturalist told us that it was a female. He could make out from the mark the paw made on the ground. 

 

Pug mark, Nagarhole

One good thing about the Nagarhole forest is that they don't allow many vehicles for the safari. I think only about eight or nine ply at a time. That leaves the animals in peace. Other parks should also do the same thing I feel. There were too many vehicles in Bandhavgarh. May be more than twenty five at a time crisscrossing the jungle. Even we humans did not feel nice. Imagine what the animals would have felt about such big traffic in their habitat. 

Nagarhole was very quiet. When you switch off the ignition of the jeep, you don't hear anything other than the sounds of birds and the wind.

 

We saw Arjuna, the elephant, in the jungle. He is a semi wild and semi domesticated elephant. He is now sixty year old, I am told. He is the lead elephant in the Dussehra festivities in Mysore. I have shot a short video of him. 

 

Arjuna, the elephant

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