There is More to the Jungle than Just Tiger

When you go to a tiger reserve in India, you of course wish to sight the tiger. But remember it is a wild animals, it has a free will of its own. The only place where a tiger sighting is guaranteed is the zoo. In the jungle you have to do tapasya to see it. These were the words of Anish Andheria who runs the NGO Wildlife Conservation Trust (WCT). I wholeheartedly agree with him. However, if you care there is more to the jungle than just tiger. This was a #saveourtigers with Aircel.

1. Clean Air and Beautiful Tress

Dhonk Trees at Ranthambore
Dhonk Trees at Ranthambore, Aircel’s #saveourtigers Trip

Dhonk Trees are quite prominent at Ranthambore. They give such a soft look when they have dropped their leaves. There were many other beauties like Jamun, banyan and peepal. Also if you pay attention you will realize you can breathe easily on lungful of air without feeling choked. If you are visiting from a big city in India, chances are such clean air is not available for love or money!

2. Small Things

Plum Headed Parakeet, Ranthambore
Plum Headed Parakeet

I love birds, this was my first sighting of the plum headed parakeet. It was sitting on the flame of forest flowers was a bonus. If you get obsessed and upset about tiger sightings, chances are you will not even notice beauties like these. So, the next time the guide or the jeep driver points out a bird, do take a look. I also managed to spot my first Paradise Flycatcher but it was such a fleeting glimpse, there was no chance of clicking a picture.

3. Wildlife at the Lodge

Butterflies at the Lodge
Butterflies at the Lodge

Most of the jungle lodges are situated in peaceful environments. The lodge I stayed at Ranthambore was buzzing with butterflies. Same goes for the birds. Some of them get visited by leopards too! Now I certainly do not wish for a leopard sighting at the lodge but I am quite happy with the birds and the butterflies I get to see right there! Anish made an interesting statement about butterflies. He said men like to identify with big things, like tiger, hardly any male would admit that they love butterflies! Go figure.

4. A Philosophical Langoor

A Philosophical Langoor
A Philosophical Langoor

What to do, you get to see the langoors in such numbers in any forest they hold no special charm. Now if only they were elusive as the tigers, I am sure we would value them more. I have often enjoyed watching them in herds with little ones. A languor was also of invaluable help to us this time as it was his alarm call that finally gave the tiger away!

5. Sambar Deer on Morning Walk

Sambar Deer
Sambar Deer on Morning Walk

When I saw the deer on their morning walk, my heart stopped for a while. It was such a beautiful sight to see them crossing the road in line! The early morning clean air, the open spaces and the joy of being in jungle is in itself exquisite. The backdrop of the mountains and deer crossing made it made it extra special. I rarely ever click from a moving vehicle as I can hardly hold the camera still even when we are stationary. But to me this sight was so extraordinary that I did. And I glad the picture came out as half way decent.

6. Spotted Deer

Spotted Deer
Reflections in the Jungle

My daughter calls them dot deer and kisses their picture in a book. They are one of the weakest in the food chain, one of the cutest in the animal kingdom. Once again Anish said β€œif you wish to curse someone, tell them they would be born as deer in Ranthambore.” These pretty creatures are always skittish not knowing when they will become tiger food! Not a pretty thought, I know but such is the animal world or should I say the world?

7. Water, Peacock, Flowers, Mountains

Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan
Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan

Water, peacock, flowering trees and mountains- when they all of them come together it can be magic. I was fortunate that at this point we were allowed to get out of our vehicles. Otherwise you are strictly required to remain in your vehicle within a national park in India.

8. Water Snake

A Water Snake
A Water Snake

If it were not for the trained eyes of the driver and the guide we city slickers would have never spotted the water snake. I am no fan of snakes but from a distance they make for a pretty picture.

9. A Young Crocodile

A Young Crocodile
A Young Crocodile

Crocodiles are damn good at camouflage, but then so is the most of the animal kingdom. There have been times when crocodiles have been pretty indistinguishable from the rocks they choose to sun on. I am not sure why this young crocodile made itself so conspicuous!

10. The Selfie of a Peacock

Selfie of a Peacock!
Selfie of a Peacock!

If a peacock was able to take a selfie I wonder if it would be similar to this? I would like to think that it would resemble my picture but then I guess the bird itself would put on display its magnificent feathers too.

So the next time when you go to jungle, I know it would be thrilling to spot a tiger. But even if you do not, don’t worry the supporting cast is alluring too, but if only you would take an interest. After all there is more to the jungle than just tiger.

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28 thoughts on “There is More to the Jungle than Just Tiger”

  1. Lovely post. Love the picture of the parakeet and I bet you loved your first Paradise Flycatcher, mine was in Dandeli national park. The spotted deer really are cute, and the “selfie” is fabulous. I completely agree with what you’ve said and I hope all tiger chasers learn to love the rest of the natural world too. πŸ™‚

    1. Priya I am sure you have heard the nasty conversations when tourists were not able to see a tiger! Now if only it was a pet of the guide or the driver!

    1. I have to go to Sunderbans Indrani. The water snake was quite far away, it would not scare you πŸ˜€

  2. Now that basically sums up the awesomeness of a jungle in many ways.
    Great post Mridula! πŸ™‚
    Beautiful set of pictures as well. πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you Nikhil, it was basically browsing through the pictures I realized that there was a post in it πŸ˜€

  3. Whoa ! This is such an amazing piece on the jungle. Ranthambhor has been on my list for a long time. High time we pay a visit to both the jungle and the fort..

  4. Wow! what a post! just happened to drop in here from Indiblogger and totally loved it! The woods speak their own language and you have captured this beautifully!

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Mridula Dwivedi

I started my India travel blog, Travel Tales from India in 2005. In 2016 I realized Travel Tales from India and Abroad better reflected my writings. I love to walk and ride in metros around the world. I have not been everywhere, I am not even close, but it is on my list. I also quit my job as a professor in 2015, it was a happening year! I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur ages ago!

If you wish to collaborate with me, please check out my media kit. You can write to me at mridulablog@gmail.com

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