Colours of a Catastrophe

by Shreya Yadav   I am swimming in the unusually warm waters of Kalpeni in the Lakshadweep, overwhelmed by the bizarre colours of this catastrophe. Muted pastel shades have turned violently psychedelic. A branching colony of brown Pocillopora is now lavender, sky-blue fingers of Acropora a radiant white, grey sheets of Montipora fluoresce green and […]

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Where the land meets the sea

by Pooja Rathod   Today’s article is not about animals walking on land or swimming in the ocean. It’s about big and small creatures living in-between – that is, where the land meets the sea. In this ‘inter-tidal zone’, the water rises and falls every few hours, alternately drowning and then completely drying out this […]

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Settling on shaky ground: How dead coral structures carve the fate of young coral recruits in the Lakshadweep islands

Photographs: Shreya Yadav Illustration: Rohan Arthur   For coral larvae—the free-floating progeny of adult coral—picking a perfect place to build their homes amidst the bustling crannies, alleys and turrets of reefs is ever so important, especially since once they settle, they spend their entire lives in the same place. But with sea temperatures spiralling upwards, […]

Hawkfish

How I wish I was a fish!

Wouldn’t you love to be a fish – gorgeously coloured and interestingly shaped, spending your life jumping from one coral to another…just like a hawkfish? With a wonderfully apt name, these patient stalkers of prey behave like hawks. They rest and wait for that opportune moment when they can dash out to grab their meal. […]

The Constant Gardener

By Elrika D’Souza and Vardhan Patankar Out in the wonderfully clear azure seas of the Andaman and Nicobar archipelago, we embarked on a quest to study the little known animal, the dugong, commonly known as sea cow. Spending about seventy percent of their lives below the surface dugongs come into view only briefly when they […]

The tropicbirds of memory

The arrival of the postman at our doorstep, just before noon, is always a welcome event, more so when he brings something always awaited by us: a book or a magazine, or even the rare letter. Today, he brought the latest issue of Indian Birds, volume 8 number 5 of our subscription to this excellent bird journal, which […]

Living in an extreme world

by T. R. Ramachandran and T. R. Shankar Raman (This article appeared as a lead on the edit page of The Hindu on 13 July 2013) The recent flood-related disaster in Uttarakhand was labelled a Himalayan tsunami, recalling the deaths, damage, and destruction that followed the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami of December 2004. Yet, […]