Friday, September 24, 2010

Maidenahalli revisited

A quickfire visit to the Maidenahalli Blackbuck reserve near Madhugiri on a free Sunday. This was our second outing in the Figo and I had the privilege of stretching my legs in the backseat and to snore as only 3 of us were travelling.

We took the same route that we have taken before, but currently the road conditions are poor and in deteriorated state.

Route: There are quite a few routes but mentioned below is the route we took Nelamangala – Kyatasandra tollgate – Sira bypass road – Koratagere - Madhugiri – Puruvara village – Giregoudanahalli – Maidenahalli reserve. ½ a km after giregoudanahalli, an unmetalled track turns right which needs to be taken to reach the reserve gate. The best option would be take the Bangalore-Dabbaspet(below the flyover)-Madhugiri-Puruvara-Giregoudanahalli-Maidenahalli. The road is in excellent condition and a pleasure to drive.

Note: The road conditions mentioned are as of August 2010.
After a nice, heavy breakfast at Madhugiri town, we proceeded towards the reserve.We were greeted by a brown adult male Blackbuck relieving himself at the entrance of the gate.

This time around the entire reserve was looking green full of shrubs and bushes grown everywhere and it was quite a task locating the blackbucks in between. We drove around the tracks for sometime and could spot few here and there. Then we parked our vehicle near the rest house and started walking inside. As I was aware of few spots, we proceeded straight under the hot sun.

We were able to spot quite a few blackbucks but unluckily as these are very sensitive animals, they moved away as we approached closer. Even having my 100-400, I could not manage a single close up shot of any of the blackbucks, need to try my luck next time.

After roaming for couple of hours and as we were resting atop a cliff with plans to return back, far to our left we could sense white spots in the field. On closer observation, we found a huge herd of blackbucks grazing in the open field.

We presume there were anywhere between 80-100 of them (including grown males, females & sub-adults) in the group. We were surprised to see such a huge group in one place. Unfortunately they were too far away and below is only what I could manage to shoot.

While returning back, we managed to catch a glimpse of a fox that ran away even before we could realize. Back to the parking space, we left towards home this time taking the route via Dabbaspet and also visiting Devarayanadurga temples enroute.

Happy to have seen Blackbuck in such good numbers.
Sad to have seen cattle feeding on the green in the reserve.
Sad to see the feral dogs roaming the fields.

Hope this place survives the test of time and the numbers of prey-predator increase.

Care for the nature and the nature cares for you!
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