Leaping in line
Driving down the rural roads near the blackbuck sanctuary provides the author with a photo-oportunity of a lifetime – the chance to capture the great migration.
Driving through the highway near Velavadar Blackbuck sanctuary, I had to suddenly stop the car. The reason for my abrupt halt were crossing the road.. During the monsoons this road mainly used by villagers. They drive down this road every day with their vehicles. But I noticed that they all drive slowly, much within the limits, because this road runs near the blackbuck sanctuary. During this particular visit in the monsoons, it was luckily a little sunny. I was there in the afternoon, and managed to capture many images of the blackbuck, although not satisfied because of the prevalent light conditions. But nature give you a wonderful surprise sometimes, especially if you are patient. I waited in the park till evening, when the weather completely changed. It was suddenly pouring, as if someone hung a sheet of water from the sky. Through this heavy downpour I had the photo-oportunity of a lifetime. I noticed a large number of blackbuck crossing the road in the heavy rain. It was some truly magical moments in front of my eyes. Due to heavy rain I was at first a little hesitant to start taking images, and rather wanted to simply enjoy the moment. But my passion for photography implored me to rethink my decision, take some shots, and blame the rains later! So I took out my camera, protecting it against the rainfall. while trying to capture shots from a little hole infront on the plastic covering of the lens protector. During this process,I suddenly saw the most amazing sight I have ever beheld. Almost a hundred strong herd of blackbuck crossing the road. There was a rare albino blackbuck (white) with them. Providing a break in the pattern, the albino was in stark contrast with the rest of the herd. I was a joy to behold, and one of the most cherishable memories of my life.
During the monsoons, Velavadar village roads are active with animal crossings, especially the blackbuck. It is a phenomenon free for all to enjoy. The only thing to keep in mind is that we follow the rules, do not over-speed, and stop our vehicles during this migration. It is sad that dueto development in Gujarat,the village roads are widened, and cut into the national park area. Indiscriminate driving leads to roadkills, which is a worrisome prospect for the hoofed denizens of the blackbuck sanctuary.
Read also: Junglimericks: In the Crazy Wilds of India
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