Archive for the ‘Wildlife’ Category

FAQ’s about Snakes

Snake! The very word seems to evoke a feeling of terror in the mind of the average person; but if one has better knowledge of these creatures, one can see that much of the dread is misplaced. Here are some FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) about snakes, answered by P Gowirshankar, a herpetologist who has been actively associated with the Agumbe Rainforest Research Station (ARRS), which has had the only telemetry project for tracking the King Cobra in that region. Gowrishankar is at present located in Bangalore, pursuing his doctoral studies.

1. I see a snake in my yard or house, and I don’t want to go close to find out if it is poisonous or not. My first instinct is to panic. What should I do? Will my actions be different in case the snake is quiet, and in case it is moving about? What if it is in an odd place where it cannot be easily dislodged/chased off?

Yes, the first instinct is to panic, nothing much can be done about that. If you are aware and can do it, do your best to replace that fear with knowledge and act accordingly. If the snake is moving constantly keep a watch on it from a safe distance. If the snake is coiled up or resting nothing much to worry, do not disturb it but do keep a watch. Call any of the animal welfare organizations in Bangalore and they will help retrieve the snake.

2. In case I am bitten, or I see someone bitten by a snake, what should I do? (Especially if the snake is no longer around, and I cannot find out if the snake was venomous or not)

Not all snake bites are from venomous snakes. However do look out for the following symptoms and follow the first aid listed below:

General symptoms of a bite from a venomous snake:

* Wound site: Fang marks, discoloration, burning sensation, blistering of skin, local pain, oedema
* Bleeding from the wound that does not seem to stop
* Bleeding gums
* Progressive swelling of the bitten limb
* Drooping eyelids
* Difficulty in speaking
* Difficulty in breathing
* Drowsiness, unsteadiness

First Aid

* Calm and reassure the patient. Only a small percentage of snakebites prove serious. Panic can increase the heart rate and speed the spread of venom in the body.
* Remove any constricting items worn by the patient such as bangles, bands, bracelets, finger rings, watch and so on.
* Completely immobilize the patient: Lay them down and keep them still. Splint the bitten limb to prevent movement.
* A bitten leg should be splinted from below the ankle to the top of the thigh, and then strapped to the other leg to keep the entire lower half of the body still. A bitten arm should be splinted from the fingertips to the shoulder, and then strapped firmly (not tightly) to the side of the body.
* Keep the wound clean; do not apply mud, manure or other poultices, if the wound requires washing use uncontaminated water to gently clean it.
* Do not allow the person to walk or move about; keep them completely immobile and take them to hospital as soon after the bite as possible.
* The victim should be kept warm. Watch out for the general symptoms (listed above) and inform the doctor.

The only remedy for venomous snakebite is anti-venom serum. Polyvalent anti-venom serum is effective against the bites of the Big Four: Common Cobra, Saw-scaled Viper, Common Krait, Russell’s viper.

Note: Only if safely possible, try and get a good look at the snake (or photograph it) to help the doctor identify it, and treat the bite accordingly.

Here’s what you should not do when a person has been bitten by a snake

* Do not give sedatives to calm the patient.
* Do not tie an electric cable, string or rubber tourniquet or ligatures, and do not cut the bite site, or the bitten limb.
* Do not use ice packs, electric shock or suction at the site of bite.
* Do not elevate the limb.
* Do not use potassium permanganate.
* Do not let the patient walk or run; keep them absolutely immobilized.
* Do not administer alcoholic beverage or any medication
* Do not give food or water, as both may be a choking hazard if the person vomits.
* Do not waste time with quack ‘remedies’ such as ‘snake stones’, or chanting mantras. Go for anti-venom serum without delay.

3. Where would I be able to get snake anti-venom in Bangalore?

Anti-venom is stocked in most leading hospitals of Bangalore, including Manipal Hospital, Baptist Hospital, Mallya Hospital, Bowring Hospital and St John’s Medical Hospital.

4. Should I administer anti-venom in any case? If the snake was not a poisonous one, will the anti-venom have bad effects?

No. Medical assistance is mandatory as it has to be administered through intravenous means. It is best for doctors to take a call on whether to administer anti-venom after observing the symptoms. Unnecessary use of anti-venom may cause allergic reactions.

5. What should I do to prevent snakes from entering my garden or home? I know they are good for the ecosystem, but I don’t want to deal with them.

Keep the garden clean and free from mounds of litter. Keep flower pots away from doors and windows and do not stock them close to each other. Make sure there are no rats breeding in the garden or in the house. Keep the place well lit; else use a torch to move around.

6. Is it true that snakes are to be found where there are termite mounds?

Not necessarily. They need to regulate their body temperature so depending on the temperature, humidity, habitat and prey base they select resting places, and a termite mound is just one such resting place.

7. Is it useful to call in a snake-charmer? If so, how can I locate one?

It is better to contact animal welfare organizations like the following:

Compassion Unlimited Plus Action (CUPA)
LR Nagar, Koramangala
Bengaluru – 560047
Ph No 22947302

Bannerghatta Rehabilitation Centre (WRRC)
Survey No. 129, Jigni Hobli,
Anekal Taluk, Bannerghatta,
Bangalore – 560 083
Ph No 22947307/ 22947300/ 22947301
wrrcbrc[at]gmail[dot]com

Karuna Animal Welfare Association Of Karnataka
Kasturba Road, Cubbon Park
Bangalore- 560001
Ph No 22860205, 23411181

People for Animals
Survey no. 67,
Uttarahalli Road, Kengeri,
Bangalore 560 060
Ph No 2860 4767, 2860 3986, 2273 3350, 9980339880

8. Are there any common misconceptions about snakes in urban areas that I should be aware of?

There are many myths and misconceptions about snakes, which not differ much between urban and rural areas. Four of the common myths are:
a) Cobras take revenge
b) They drink milk
c) Talking about snakes at home is equal to inviting them.
d) Male combat of snakes is misunderstood to be mating and the superstition is that viewing this invites trouble for generations. ⊕

Wildlife/Photography Expedition to Agumbe

Amoghavarsha, an experienced wildlife photographer, is conducting another monsoon wildlife/photography expedition.

The next monsoon expedition to Agumbe is scheduled for 28th and 29th of August. This will be the last expedition in the peak monsoons, after this the monsoons will subside and so will photography opportunities.

The last expedition was exciting and very fruitful with sightings of 2 wild King Cobras at close quarters and of course many more snakes, frogs and nocturnal animals.

Do take a look at

http://amoghavarsha.com/workshops/agumbe/

for more information, testimonials and photographs.

If any of you are interested, contact Amogh at +91 99010 44344.

The Truth About Tigers: Screening of Shekhar Dattatri’s film

THE TRUTH ABOUT TIGERS

A film by Shekar Dattatri, Duration: 40 minutes

Screening on Friday 23rd April at 7:30pm sharp at Alliance Française Bangalore. There are limited seats so please take yours by 7:15pm. The screening will be followed by an interactive Q&A with renowned tiger scientist Dr. Ullas Karanth and Shekar Dattatri.

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Here’s wishing everyone…

Photobucket

Wildlife Photography Exhibition at CKP

10th to 17th December 2009, 11.00am to 8.00 pm:
WILD WITNESS
An Exhibition of Indian Wildlife Photographs by S P Nagendra

Inauguration on Thursday, 10th December 2009 at 10.30 am by
Sri Sri Ravishankar Guruji
Art of Living Foundation

Thursday, 17th December 2009 at 10.30 am:
Release of a book on Indian Wildlife – Written by S P Nagendra
Book release by Sri B S Yeddyurappa
Honourable Chief Minister of Karnataka
Launching of Website by
Dr Veerendra Heggade
Dharmadhikari, Srikshetra Dharmasthala

——————————————————————————
Venue: Chitrakala Parishath Art Complex
Kumara Kripa Road, Bangalore – 560001
Exhibition Timings: 11am to 8pm

For more details, please contact:

S P Nagendra (ARPS)
(Department of Technical Education)

Unnathi Foundation
#50, 6th Main, 5th Block,
Jayanagar, Bangalore – 560041
Ph: 91-80-26656418
Mob: 093428 12036
Email: unnathinature@yahoo.in

Art and Photography for a good cause

From:
Thursday, October 1, 2009 at 10:00am
To:
Wednesday, October 7, 2009 at 7:00pm
Location:
Alliance Francaise de Bangalore
Vasanthnagar

Phone:
919880969064
Email:
sujay.kotian@gmail.com

Young artists and photographers come together and display their Art works and photographs flowing in the lines of “Wild” life and what is left of it.

Artists: Abhijna Anand, Arjun Srivathsa,Prashanthi Nerallapalli
photographers: phillip ross, Ramnath Chandrasekhar, Vivek Vellanki

Display and sale of all exhibits, along with handicrafts by MOGHIYAS [ tribal folk of Rajasthan].

proceeds of the sale will be donated for wildlife
CONSERVATION- specifically the critically endangered CROC-GHARIAL and the CAT in peril-TIGER

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Assam & Arunachal naturalists trip

T Nature Club is pleased to announce its winter trail to a beautiful region of the North East India… Namdapha.

Dibru-Saikhowa is a biosphere reserve. This little known site, is one of the biodiversity hot spots situated in the south bank of the river Brahmaputra. It is located in the alluvial flood plains of the Brahmaputra. Fashioned by nature – earthquakes and ever changing water courses it has numerous island pockets and water bodies providing an unusual habitat for varied wildlife
and aqua fauna and avifauna.

Contained between the Debang, Lohit & the Great Brahmaputra rivers,the 340 sq Kms reserve was set up with a view to protecting the grass land and swamp habitat. Its internal water channels & bodies,seasonally flooded forests, “beels”, and grassy pockets, makes it an interesting birding destination for rare specialized grass land and swamp forest birds such as the threatened Marsh Babbler, Jerdon’s Babbler, Black throated Parrotbill, Rufous-vented( swamp) Prinia, and Jerdons Bushcat. You can also spot altitudinal migrants such as Pale-capped pigeon, White-tailed Rubythroat,and Black – breasted Thrush, and various warblers. More than 300 species have been recorded.
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Wildlife Expedition to Agumbe, 24 and 25 Jan,2009

Amoghavarsha J S, who has moved from the I T industry to become a wildlife photographer, is well-known to all of us. His photographs have been featured in the WWF calendar, and he has been showcased in prestigious magazines such as Better Photography. His last wildlife expedition to Agumbe was a great success (yes, I know, because I paid and went!) and by popular demand, he is repeating the expedition this month, on the 24th and 25th January 2009.

You will find all details at:

http://amoghavarsha.com/workshops/agumbe/

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"Banada Baduku"..Wildlife Photography Exhibition, 12th to 17th December 2008, Chitrakala Parishath

Gowreesh Kapani and Lokesh Mosale, two well-known wildlife photographers, are showcasing some of their work at Chitrakala Parishath from the 12th to the 17th of December.

The inauguration is on the 12th of December at 10.30am and the Special Guest is Shri U R Ananthamurthy.

Lokesh and Gowreesh’s images have dazzled us all; let’s go and encourage these talented photographers!

Walk on the Wild Side at PfA….

*

Did you know that urban Bangalore is home to the Slender Loris, Cobras, Jungle Cats, Owls, Monitor Lizards, Egrets, Pangolins?

Eminent wild life experts will share their knowledge on all things wild in Bangalore. Talks, Audio Visuals and some one on one interaction will guarantee a knowledge filled afternoon which will be fun and wondrous. You can also glimpse some of the wildlife rescued and housed at the PFA shelter and see them up close and personal.

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