A newsletter on the Natural History, Ecology
and Conservation of the Agasthyamalai region, Western Ghats, India.

Any and all opinions expressed in this newsletter are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of ATREE. 

Editorial Team

Editor: T. Ganesh
Associate editor: Vivek Ramachandran
Editorial Review: R. Ganesan, M. Soubadra Devy
Design and presentation: Vivek Ramachandran

A S H O K A   T R U S T   F O R   R E S E A R C H   I N   E C O L O G Y   A N D   T H E   E N V I R O N M E N T

Monsoon magic
- Abhisheka K
‘Rangoli’ termites
Photo: Abhisheka K

I woke up on a wet morning after the first rains hit Singampatti to witness a sudden spurt of floral blooms on the ground outside the living quarters at the new field station. On closer inspection the bloom made my eyes open in wonder. There were thousands of winged termites digging into the ground looking for mates which reminded me of the flower decoration during the Onam festival. I had watched these insects the previous night swarming around the lights. We did not have to worry about sweeping up the place as garden lizards, House crows, White-headed Babblers willingly went ahead with the clean up.
As the rains continued, other creepy crawlies came to life. Little and pretty red ‘Velvet mites’ started moving around the courtyard brightly punctuating an otherwise plain ground. While young ones of Giant centipedes, little scorpions, baby Bark Geckos enjoyed the coolness, the naughty White-headed Babbler chick loved getting drenched in the rain as it watched and strayed toward Black Drongos much against the wishes of its parents. The pond in front of the living quarters started filling and the male frogs sang the whole night.
The water in the canal next to the field station flowed in full strength but this did not deter the Checkered keel backs and the Buff-striped keel backs from leaving their homes in the canal.
As I watched these little creature appreciating the arrival of the rains I felt glad that I was not in the city forced to stay indoors.

Volume 4,  Issue 3
      December 2010

Centre for Excellence in Conservation Science
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