Panchkula

Eurasian Wryneck (Jynx torquilla)

I first spotted this bird perched on a electric transmission wire. The area underneath was all shrubs. It was in the hot monsoon season. The bird has a very strange plumage pattern of brown and cream stripes. It’s name is Eurasian Wryneck and here it comes on migration. It belongs to the woodpecker family although it’s beak is not as large and dagger like as the other woodpeckers. It subsists on ants and insects which are found in the dead wood. It can rotate it’s neck by almost 180 degrees. When it senses danger, it makes a hissing sound. The… Read More »Eurasian Wryneck (Jynx torquilla)

Where to Tricity???

Tricity-meaning three cities combined. One such tricity consists of 3 cities namely: Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula. Chandigarh was planned a new city as the capital of Punjab when Lahore was lost to Pakistan. It was matter of prestige for Jawahar Lal Nehru, the first prime minister of independent India who wanted to assuage the sufferings of the Punjab which befell it due to partition. Everyone is aware of the beautifully planned city. As the years went by, States of Himachal Pradesh and Haryana were separated from the Punjab. There was a demand by Punjab to hand over the Chandigarh city… Read More »Where to Tricity???

Savanna nightjar

Savanna Nightjar (Caprimulgus affinis) is a bird which is found in South East India. I was moving about in Ghaggar River in Panchkula. It was in the June month, scorching heat and dry. Bed of the river is almost dry- full of sand and pebbles. As I was descending a raised bank through the pebbles, three of them flew just from my feet. They are master of camouflage. It is very difficult to spot them. They just merge with the background. They caught you unawares and suddenly fly away. You have to keep watching them where they land. It is… Read More »Savanna nightjar

Indian White Eye 

It is a very small sized bird. It is immediately noticed by its greenish yellow colour plumage with its whitish breast. But most prominent feature is the white rim around its eyes. The bird is widespread in Asia. Both sexes are alike in appearance. It is very timid and restless bird. It mostly resides in the thick branches where it hides itself. It eats insects which are deposited on the leaves. It also eat the nectar of some flowers. It is either hiding in the shade of branches or is so restless that it takes great patience to take good… Read More »Indian White Eye 

Herbal Garden Panchkula

The garden is very near to my home. If I take the pedestrian route which winds through fields and tall reed grass river bed, the garden is hardly 2 kilometers away. But you have to cross the Ghaggar river on the way and wade into the water and climb steep sloping boundary.  The path winds through the fields and poplar trees which in itself is very sylvan. In winters there is wheat crop in the fields. Small rivulets used to channel the river water for irrigating these fields run through the fields. After crossing these fields, the river bed starts.… Read More »Herbal Garden Panchkula

Land Stories 

Land used to be like one’s mother in India as more than 70% people are still dependent on the land for their livelihood. Before the introduction of modern agricultural equipment like tractors, bullocks were used virtually for all agricultural tasks like tilling the land, pulling the cart which the farmer used for bringing the produce and fodder home for cattle. Agriculture was completely manual and commerce was not a factor. A farmer produced only enough for his family needs. Agriculture was dependent on the surface water available through rivers and rains. Thus it was wholly dependent on the natural factors.… Read More »Land Stories 

Little or Small Pratincoles: Beauty in small packets 

There is a river near Panchkula city of Haryana in India. It is called Ghaggar. Once a mighty river, now it has become a mere shadow of its past. A thin stream of water flows through the large bed made of sand, pebbles and small amounts of clay. Bushes and different grasses like bulrushes grow in its bed. Here in the beds near running water one can spot these little cute birds only if you look very carefully on the ground because there colour camouflage them in the sand. They keep standing at a given spot for long time. They… Read More »Little or Small Pratincoles: Beauty in small packets 

Palash Flowers: The Flame of Jungle

When Palash tree flowers in the jungle, it seems that whole area is on fire. That is why the tree is also called Flame of the forest. Near Panchkula which is our native place are Shivalik hills. One of places in these hills is called Morni. The entire route passes through hills and zigzag. There are streams passing through under the bridges. A number of wild trees and plants grow. It is a very picturesque site. We go on to that route many times just for drive. There are hordes of monkeys and langoors. This time we went yesterday. There… Read More »Palash Flowers: The Flame of Jungle

Baya Weaver: An Amazing Bird

A Baya weaver is a small-sized bird. It weaves beautiful nests. These nests hang from the fronds of trees which have thorny in nature to ward off the predators like snakes which are a threat to their eggs. The entry of the nest is near bottom. You can see many nests on a single tree. These birds live in large flocks. They make a number of nests made on a single tree. Secondly they prefer, in addition to the type of tree being acacia or palm, the location where food is easily available and also pools of water are there.… Read More »Baya Weaver: An Amazing Bird