Friday, February 26, 2016

Vaalpaarai Trip - A Meeting With The Gaurs (Indian Bison)!

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This is sort of second part of our Vaalpaarai trip.  First part is here! We started very early in the morning from our Monica Bungalow.  The hotel has got a 'Naturalist', Mr.Sachin who took us around the Briar Tea Estate.  He is a natural 'nature lover'.  He gets excited while talking about birds and animals, which suited me and my son, who are mad about them as well.  We saw many birds, Macaque monkeys which are found only here, in the Western Ghats, Elephants, flying peacocks (really, four of them flew in a line in front of our eyes...they flew away when we realized what we saw,  with our mouth open, really, so no photos, they are just in our mind...unforgettable visual!) and Gaurs!

Gaurs are called Indian Bisons! They are quite huge with big eyes and they look straight at OUR eyes without moving a bit! They have got lovely satiny coats.  The Gaur herd we saw had a couple of babies (calves) with them and so they were extra cautious.  I can still visualise it at the way they were glaring at us...dare you come near us, I thought they were saying!

Wiki says: 'In India, the population was estimated to be 12,000–22,000 in the mid-1990s. The Western Ghats and their outflanking hills in southern India constitute one of the most extensive extant strongholds of gaur, in particular in the Wayanad-Nagarahole-Mudumalai-Bandipur  complex.' But now, they are enlisted in the endangered species list, here, in India and other places.

 Now, have a look at these beautiful animals:


The one who is standing on the left never diverted his eyes from us until we left the area! He was very very handsome! I feel that their beauty is not captured in the camera fully! They looked more beautiful, esp. their coat, when we saw them there in the early morning sunlight!

Nearly fully grown male and a young one....Is he warning/challenging me to come near him?!Look at his mouth with a piece of grass hanging!
Ears and horns look as if they are painted!

Click on the pictures to have a good view!

Hope their population increases! Feel very sorry for these animals...no enough food or water for them to survive...  Another 10-15 years and we might not see them anymore.

We saw Lion-tailed Macaque monkeys who live only in the Western ghat area, esp. here in this area.  A post will be here exclusively for them next week.



It is here! Click on this link pl.

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13 comments :

Jeevan said...

Wow! Splendid shots on the Indian guars… against the pretty green tea estates, they stood majestic. One of the magnificent sights of bird watching happen to me also at Valparai, the sight of Great Hornbill will stay forever as precious. I too have seen bison, elephants and lion tail macaques in valparai and I have plenty of photos still in folder and yet to be shared.

Looks like you stayed at a wonderful place and also inspiring me to stay at such places. Did they take you too Irachal falls in the birla estate? its a wonderful place and there's also the popular sidhi vinayaka temple, where u can see different kind of flowers around the temple.

Sandhya said...

JEEVAN: Yes, the place is beautiful and the bungalow where we stayed was very nice! 9 of us went and stayed there. It was like a family get together. For doing this, this is the best place. Food was good, staff very courteous...it was a happy memorable occasion for us. Please go and stay here and enjoy!

We too went for bird watching early in the morning and saw many birds, macaques etc. They have got a Naturalist in their payroll and he took us to the estate. A very knowledgeable person.

No, we didn't go to Birla estate...maybe next time!

Thanks for the first comment, Jeevan!

Destination Infinity said...

I missed going to Valparai when I was in Coimbatore. But I went till the Valparai foothills - Monkey falls, in my bike. Did you visit that falls?

When we were in Munnar, our guide showed us a 'Kattu Maadu' in one opposite hill. He warned us not to ever venture near them as they can even drive away elephants it seems! Gaurs seem to be smaller, but they look strong nevertheless. You managed to get nice closeup pics :)

Destination Infinity

KParthasarathi said...

I had posted a comment already.Since it has gone astray,I am commenting again.Beautiful pictures of bisons.It must have been a very enjoyable trip from what you and Mr.Jeevan had written about the place Such trips with several family members become memorable.

Sandhya said...

DESTINATION INFINITY: Yes we saw Monkey falls too! Sachin said that the group we saw didn't have fully grown gaurs. But they looked huge nevertheless. Visit the place again!


K.PARTHASARATHY: I checked if your earlier comment was in 'moderation' but no. Sorry, don't know where it has gone.

Yes, this trip is going to stay in our mind always! Thank you!

Rama Ananth said...

Such handsome Bisons! We saw quite a lot of them during our visit to Masanagudi, yes there are really beautiful, and especially when you see 10/12 of them together with their babies. The surrounding green jungles and their shiny coats does add beauty and majestic to the whole picture.
All the pictures have captured their beauty so well!

Bikram said...

WOW .. What a magnificient Animal .. beautiful clicks ..


Bikram's

Avada Kedavra said...

I didn't even know India had Bisons :( Beautiful clicks.

Sandhya said...

RAMA ANANTH: Thank you, Rama! They looked more beautiful in person!


BIKRAM: Thank you, Bikram!


AVADA KEDAVRA: Yes, we have but they are diminishing now. Thank you, AK!

SG said...

Thanks for the beautiful photos and wonderful travelogue. Enjoyed reading it. We were planning to go to Vaalpaarai on our next visit.

Loco mente said...

Thanks for sharing these wonderful pictures...
I hope that these animals are conserved...

sm said...

beautiful photos
waiting for the next post to see the photos and enjoy travelogue

Sandhya said...

SG: Please do! You will love it! Remember to go to the waterfalls too! My earlier post was about that place! Veg. food was very good in Monica Bungalow! Rooms also were very good. Service was very good! It was a memorable trip for us!


LOCOMENTE: Hope they survive!


sm: Thank you, sm!

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