A Fishing Cat Kitten in the Sundarbans Tiger Reserve

Ramki Sreenivasan Leave a Comment

Sundarbans in West Bengal has become popular for increased tiger sightings. However, the sighting of lesser cats, like the Leopard Cat and the Fishing Cat, still remains rare due to their nocturnal habits. In fact, the latter is one of the least seen mammals in Indian Sundarbans.

I had a fleeting glimpse of an individual in Feb 2017 basking in the early morning sun during a foggy winter morning. In Feb 2019, a few of us got to see a … Read More

Unethical Bird Photographers Disgrace Wildlife Community in West Bengal

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“I will not harm my subject!”

Every nature photographer should willingly and happily follow this simple credo – even when no one else is watching.

The sad truth is, today, for every responsible photographer who respects nature and tries to minimize his or her impact, there are hordes of unruly, uncaring shutterbugs who’ve become a menace to wildlife, says CI’s A Guide to Ethical Wildlife Photography.

Bibhutibhusan Wildlife Sanctuary (formerly Parmadan Forest) is a small (0.68 sq km) wildlife … Read More

Finding the Fascinating Finfoots

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Cruising through a canal after dusk in the heart of the tiger-swamp certainly sounds most daunting. The glimmering eyes of fish owls perched on overhanging trees, alarm calls of spotted deer, and the soothing sounds of the rowing boat make for a enthralling journey, whose climax reaches its highest peak if a tiger roars close by! Those who have spent a little time in the mangroves of the Sundarbans would clearly understand what I am trying to portray, and the … Read More

Swamp tiger, Sundarbans

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The Sundarbans is the largest single block of tidal halophytic (saline) mangrove forest in the world. The Sundarbans covers approximately 10,000 square kilometres, of which 60 percent is in Bangladesh, and the remainder in India. The Sundarbans is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Like many species of the Sundarbans, its tigers too remain highly understudied. Though it is a known fact that the big cats love water, these mangrove specialists are a step ahead and are excellent swimmers. Sundarban … Read More

Ruddy Kingfisher, Sundarbans

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The Ruddy Kingfisher (Halcyon coromanda) is a poorly understood kingfisher species. An uncommon kingfisher in the subcontinent, it is found in the Eastern Himalaya, NE India and Bangladesh, from tropical and subtropical evergreen forests as well as mangroves. It was earlier concluded that this medium-sized, rufous-orange tree kingfisher, with bright red bill and legs, is a passage migrant to the mangrove forests of Sundarbans in West Bengal, and can be seen for only for a week’s time at the most. … Read More

Water monitor eating Jungle Babbler, Sundarbans

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While walking around at Sajnekhali, Sundarbans, on 12th March, I heard jungle babblers crying the world deaf. I went ahead to find this water monitor swallowing the last parts of a jungle babbler, while the other birds of the flock kept on chattering loudly in alarm, flying overhead and jumping on branches. I don’t know how the seemingly sluggish monitor managed to catch a timid jungle babbler. It could be that the monitor was lying somewhere unnoticed when the poor … Read More

Rare Buffy Fish Owl Photographed In Sundarbans

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On 18th March 2012, we were on a boat riding into the salty waters of Sundarbans. The breeze was just warming us up for the long day ahead, when Mridul Kanti Kar, a young fellow birder with an amazing ability to spot birds, shouted out ‘Owl! Owl!’. We were near the famous Sajnekhali Watch Tower. We were clicking pictures furiously, not realizing the rarity we were looking at. Though initially mistaken for the common Brown Fish Owl, something about it … Read More

Yearly Tiger Census in Sunderbans

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Phase IV of the tiger estimation exercise will see Sunderbans gaining more sample sites and also yearly estimation of tigers. Currently, camera traps have been laid in only 100 sq kms. In the new format, three more sites covering upper, lower and middle Sundarbans have been suggested and the new protocol will use 25 pairs of double sided cameras per 100 square kilometres and a minimum trapping effort of 1000 trap nights per 100 sq km. Distance sampling protocols may … Read More

Mega World Bank Project to Conserve and Develop Sundarbans

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A mega project is being undertaken by the World Bank, to conserve the biodiversity of the Sundarbans and to develop the regio socio-economically. This is based on a recommendation from the planning commission of India. The project will be completed by the end of the year. The State minister for Sundarbans Affairs has said that steps will also be taken to develop the site as a major tourist destination. There is concern from environmentalists though that the region is already … Read More

Sundarbans mangroves carbon absorption rated at 4 crore tonnes

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In a study done by researchers at University of Calcutta, the mangrove forests of Sundarbans, which have an area of 2118 sq. km, store around 4.15 crore tonnes of CO2, This is valued at US$ 79 billion in the international carbon trading markets. The two year study has been funded by the Union Ministry of Earth Science to analyze the carbon sequestration efficiency of the Mangrove Forests. Above ground biomass was estimated for carbon content using laser beams. The study … Read More

Sundarbans tiger census next month, says Director

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Kolkata, Jan 27 (PTI): The much-awaited tiger census in the Sundarbans forest will begin next month and preparations are underway to conduct the exercise with DNA sampling method for the first time.

Pradeep Vyas, director of the Sundarbans Biosphere Reserve (SBR) told PTI here that the census would be conducted in February. The exact dates would, however, be decided after the field training of staff was over.

“Training of the staff is now underway and their field training will begin … Read More

Sundarbans — Danger in the Delta

Prerna Singh Bindra Articles Leave a Comment

Man, tiger and cattle battle for survival where the land, river and sea meet.

This is not a pretty travelogue, though there is no place more exotic and wilder than the Sundarbans. Because nowhere else is the man-animal conflict—one of the biggest issues confronting wildlife conservation—as acute or as complex as in the mangrove forests of the Sundarbans Tiger Reserve, where people and “man-eating” tigers are engaged in a prolonged, bitter battle for survival.

Occupying 2,585 sq. km of the … Read More