The khirava’s cave

In a distant Himalayan village, my young neighbour told me the story of hunter Gonpo Dorje It had been a few days since I reached Kibber, a village 4,200m high in the Himalayan mountains. The larger region is called Spiti, which means ‘the middle land’, as it lies between India and Tibet. I was still […]

Tell us about hornbills you’ve seen!

Hornbills are unique birds. They get their name from the horn-like projection called a casque on top of their beak. They are larger than other forest birds. Hornbills are flashy with their over-sized beaks, bright skin around their eyes and long eyelashes. Most have a brilliantly coloured pouch of loose skin at their throat in […]

Pic: Joyshree Chanam

For the love of honeydew

By Joyshree Chanam Would you believe me if I tell you that ants tend cattle for milk, just as cowherds do? Well, that would be almost true, only that the animals that ants tend are much smaller than cows, and belong to a group of insects called Hemiptera. There are many ant-tended Hemipteran insects such […]

Hunters to protectors

by Amruta Rane   Nitya was shocked when Kumar told her his community used to hunt hornbills. Kumar then clarified…   Nitya was thrilled, as she had just seen her first wild Great Hornbill at Pakke Tiger Reserve in Arunachal Pradesh. “I’m sure they get their names from the horn-like structure on top of their […]

Nitya in the rainforest

by Amruta Rane   While exploring the forest, Kumar showed her some footprints, but not of people…   Nitya was fascinated by the stories of rainforests she had heard when she was young: a magical world with big, tall trees that made you feel like an ant, and all the colourful birds and large animals. […]

Survival of the fittest

by K.S. Gopi Sundar   Caterpillars transforming into butterflies is nothing out of the ordinary. But it is not as simple as it seems.   Butterflies are perhaps the easiest to identify among all insects because of their vivid colours. Their life cycle is also famous. Caterpillars hatch from tiny eggs, and go on to […]