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Creepy creatures of Amboli

Creepy creatures of Amboli

Amboli is a hill station in Maharashtra about 350 km from Pune. It records 3000 mm of rains in the monsoons and hence is a home to many creepy creatures and insects which thrive in monsoons.

Amboli Water fall is a major attraction for Mumbaikars and Puneites who throng this place in thousands during the monsoons. Visiting during week ends is not advisable.

 

If you want to enjoy nature this is a great place to visit.

A visit to this place was on our bucket list for some time and it fructified this monsoon ( July 2018). Apart from visitng the waterfalls my main interest was trying my hand at photographing the creepy creatures of Amboli. To do that one has to venture out in the night as spotting them in daylight is near impossible. You need to be geared up to face heavy rains. A good raincoat, gum boots and a flash light to light up the creatures will be handy.

During the night nature walk in the Amboli Wildlife Park you can expect to see various kinds of frogs, snakes, Geckos and insects. For me it was fun searching for these reptiles and frogs, though the incessant rain was annoying. Sharing few phots taken during the trip.

Amboli Toad

Amboli Bush Frog

Bull Frog

Fungoid Frog

Leaping Frog

Marble Frog ?

Banded Gecko

Wrinkled Frog

Glow worm, this thing glows as if it has head and tail light

Woolly Caterpillar

Identity ?

Malabar Pit Viper. Malabar Pit Viper is a venomous snake mostly found in southern and western India. They are nocturnal and found on the ground,rocks and trees near streams of the Western Ghats region of India. The don’t hunt but just sit in ambush, waiting for the prey to come by.

Green Vine Snake. The green vine snake is diurnal and mildly venomous. The reptile normally feeds on frogs and lizards using its binocular vision to hunt. They are slow moving, relying on camouflaging as a vine in foliage. The snake expands its body when disturbed to show a black and white scale marking. Also, they may open their mouth in threat display and point their head in the direction of the perceived threat.

Stick insect. The stick insect (as its name suggests) is an insect that looks like a twig on a branch, bush or tree. This unique identity means that stick insects can be extremely difficult for predators to spot. Amazing nature….

Malabar Gliding Frog. The Malabar gliding frog or Malabar flying frog tree frog species found in the Western Ghats of India.

The term “gliding” frog refers to its ability to break its fall by stretching the webbing between its toes when making leaps down from the treetops. It can make gliding jumps of 9–12 m, a maximum of about 115 times its length. These stole the show for me.

Beautiful creeps, aren’t they ?

I was informed that Amboli has some beautiful species of butterflies and insects which are seen around end of September and that’s the reason I plan to be there again this September.

 

Monterrey Bay : A trip to remember

Monterrey Bay : A trip to remember

In October 2017 we had made a visit to Monterrey Bay in California and took some lovely photos. Somehow, I just forgot to post the details of my visit on the blog so here it is now. This visit was made possible kind courtesy my brother Babloo.

Monterrey is one of the top tourist destinations in California. It offers coastal beauty and charm, while maintaining a small-town feeling. While in Monterrey you can visit the World Famous Monterrey Bay Aquarium and Cannery Row. There are many   luxury hotels and fine dining places here.   Monterrey is a perfect holiday destination. View the photos to know more. Click on the thumbnail to enlarge the images.

Monterrey’s 17 mile scenic drive along the coastline is magical. The scenic beauty is just awesome and amazing. You can spend hours here just watching the sea and pelicans and seagulls flying around. Click on the thumbnails to enlarge the images.

The sea side is strewn with golf courses the most famous being the Pebble Beach Golf Course.

……..and we the visitors……………….

I hope you liked the post if so do leave a comment below.

Wildlife at Kanha National Park

Wildlife at Kanha National Park

During our road trip in February 2018 we visited Bandhavgarh and Kanha National Park. As we arrived at Bandhavgarh we were greeted with thunder showers which continued throughout our stay. We braved the rains and did two safaris but the animals remained elusive. They obviously had gone into hiding to avoid the heavy downpour.

Our next stop was Kanha, the rains followed us here too but we did manage a clear day. Many species animals  did oblige us as they had come out to bask in the sun but the tiger remained elusive.

Kanha National Park is famous for the Barasingha also known as the Swamp Deer. Once almost at the verge of extinction Kanha now has a large number of these. We were lucky to spot a large herd during our safari.

These animals look majestic in the wild. The barasingha, also called swamp deer, is a deer species distributed in the Indian subcontinent. Populations in northern and central India are fragmented, and two isolated populations occur in southwestern Nepal.

During the safari we also saw many Gaur’s (Indian Bison).

The Kanha Forest is extremely beautiful. I enjoyed the ever changing  landscape.

 

The Peacocks add color to the verdant green forest.

…..and then off course the spotted deer were all over.

We also came across few Black Bucks which are not very common in this forest.

The langurs sitting around quietly was a clear indication that the tiger was not very close by, but then this was just one part of the forest.

We sited few wild dogs. The guide informed us that there numbers were dwindling and that we were lucky to have spotted them.

Off and on we came across the wild boars who were busy digging the ground.

…..and then we came across this pair of jackals.

The forest has large number of sambhar deer which are known to raise alarm when they sense the tiger in close vicinity.

Kanha is famous for birds too and we did come across few of them.

Fish Eagle Owl

Sirkeer Malkoha

Indian Roller

Crested Serpent Eagle

The Jungle Patrol

The trip was interesting though the tiger remained elusive.

Visiting Buffalo,NY

Visiting Buffalo,NY

In August 2017 we made a trip to Niagara Falls. On our way back we decided to take a brief halt at Buffalo. Buffalo is a city on the shores of Lake Erie in upstate New York, about 20 miles from Niagara. The experience turned out to be amazing.

This was an impromptu plan so while driving we googled for the best place to visit in Buffalo. Buffalo canal side was the unanimous answer of all search engines, so we made a beeline for it.

After parking we un-expectedly walked into a vintage car exibition which was in progress along the Buffalo Water Front. The cars there were a treat to watch and the entire environment was alive and vibrant. I couldnt have asked for better as it was an ideal setting for a shutterbug.

We walked around feasting our eyes on those gorgeous machines, so well polished for the event. Browse the gallery below, click the thumbnails for an enlarged view.

This turned out to be one great place to do some people photography and I let my camera go.

We followed the walk around the car exhibition with a cruise in the Buffalo Canal. The Cruise Captain so proudly narrated the history of the grain elevators which were in ruins all along the canal, few of them re-purposed as restaurants and entertainment arenas. It was great watching people having fun and enjoying water sports in the canal. Browse the gallery below, click the thumbnails for an enlarged view.

By the time we were done with the cruise it was time for lunch, my daughters googled again and we soon found ourself in a unique restaurant named Anchor. The decor was crazy and the food delicious. Browse the gallery below, click the thumbnails for an enlarged view.

Post lunch we were on our way to Erie, the place for our night halt en route to Cincinnati, Ohio.

Trip to Orchha

Trip to Orchha

A visit to Orchha finally came through during our road trip in February 2018. The visit was overdue and it gave us great pleasure to tick it off from our bucket list.

The historic town of Orchha, nestled on the banks of river Betwa, was founded in the 16th century by the Bundela Rajput Chief, Rudra Pratap. The town seems frozen in time, with its many monuments continuing to retain their original grandeur even to this day.  There is a lot to see and photograph here. During your visit do make it a point to view the sunset from across the river, it’s mesmerizing.

Orchha is a heritage sight and a must see for those who want to soak in India’s history and past splendor. There is a story hidden in every nook and corner so it may be worthwhile to take a guide. Monuments worth visiting are the Raja Mahal, Jehangir Mahal, Chhatris and Chaturbhuj Temple. Keep an hour or so to get across the river and enjoy the sunset from there.

You may also like to visit the Bird Sanctuary and enjoy rafting in Betwa River.

To have a visual glance at the place, view the gallery below. Click on the thumbnails for an enlarged view.