A short trip to my magical Mangalajodi. As we boat out of a creek, the vastness seems as expansive as the mind, fragile yet resilient. There is no desolation in the solitariness and silence of the marshes here … the magic of Mangalajodi is intrinsically calm and unwaning. Each time it gives me something new … today its a frisky and graceful Striated Grassbird flitting in the reeds that gave me a lifer and an add to the avian list of this pristine wetlands.
Boating into huge flocks of birds literally at arm’s length, some shy and some unruffled, the experience is surreal all over again. A low-hovering Marsh Harrier creates panic as it swoops into the flocks. The birds take-off simultaneously in hundreds; even in fear, the harmonised sorties by them an unblemished choreography. Hundreds of Ruffs together displaying the snowy-white of their bellies and underwings as they swerve for a perfectly synchronised turn holds your breath captive and fills you with wonderment.
Icing on the cake was this Egret stepping onto a small patch of water rendered golden-orange by the setting sun, a couple of raised feathers on its back catching a glint of sunlight. A magic moment that we were waiting for.
My Magical Mangalajodi is rocking as always inspite of El Nino and scanty rainfall this year. The birds have come back in good numbers to this wintering home, the mood is spellbinding and the habitat retains its essence of captivating enchantment. You just need to set your pace to Nature’s languidity and patience to unravel the magic.