Text and photography by Mihiri Wikramanayake – crossposted from Mihipedia.lk
It’s an overcast Sunday afternoon, and while the clouds keep the sun at bay, the day is devoid of its usual humidity and seems perfect for walking. Today, like many times before, we are letting our two dogs explore the wetland.
Almost a stone’s throw from the Parliament Complex at Sri Jayawardenapura, Kotte, the Diyasaru Uyana (formerly known as the Thalawathugoda Biodiversity Study Park), is a 60-acre urban wetland that is home to more than 80 species of wetland birds, over 40 species of butterflies, dragonflies, mammals, amphibians, fish, reptiles and other terrestrial and aquatic plant species. Adding to the list is the otter, the Purple-faced leaf monkey, a long-tailed arboreal languor endemic to Sri Lanka, and the even a couple of estuarine crocodiles. Continue reading “An Urban Wetland. A Walk in the Park”
I had just finished a pleasant—no, horrible—5k on the most hated machine of any oarswoman/man, the erg, when my phone started lighting up like a malfunctioning Christmas light.
It was fellow GWC associate conservation scientist and Small Cat Advocacy & Research (SCAR) co-founder Ashan on the other end, informing me about a kitten that was found by someone in Colombo, and that the individual in question was asking the Facebook community for advice. Oh, God! He said that judging by the photographs posted online, it seemed to be a Fishing Cat kitten. Continue reading “A Bean in Borella”
Recently I visited the wetlands in Thalawathugoda, by Diyatha Uyana to do some photography. In all honesty, I was not expecting to see much. The wetland lies adjacent to bustling road, and with it comes the fumes and incessant sounds of revving and impatient horning. I was pleasantly surprised to find, however, that the wetland was brimming with many different species of birds, butterflies and a new favorite of mine, dragonflies. I didn’t know where to look and I was rather dizzy and disoriented from turning about and running around, following blurred images darting dragonflies and butterflies. It was quite the exciting event for me, and even if you are not as invested in these things, you may have a change of heart if you grace the Thalawathugoda Biodiversity Study Park. Continue reading “The Beauty of an Urban Wetland”
On the April 30, 2017, our new organisation Small Cat Advocacy and Research (SCAR) held it’s first field workshop. It was organised by Nature Beyond the Horizon, the Environment Society of the Horizon Campus. The field workshop followed a lecture given by Ashan a few weeks earlier at the Campus itself, and was held at our study site – the Thalawathugoda Biodiversity Study Park. Continue reading “Nature Beyond the Horizon”
Deforestation. A term that, sadly, is in common usage today. Yet how often do any of us stop to think about the consequences of losing our trees? If it doesn’t directly affect us, chances are, not very often.
We are taught in school that trees are important to maintain the oxygen balance in our atmosphere, but they do so much more than just that. The recent floods devastated our country and resulted in great loss of property and lives. As part of retrospective disaster management, we should be looking at the cumulative causes. Loss of deeply rooted trees is one such cause.
Continue reading “The Price”
I pulled into the driveway, gazing up at the beautiful redwoods through my bug splattered windshield as I parked my car. It’s a year later as I nervously climb the steps to Wild Cat Education and Conservation Fund (WCE&CF) as a new volunteer. Continue reading “Bandhu’s all grown up”
On September 2nd, 2013, Bandhu, meaning “friend” in Nepali, was born. He began his life quite small, weighing a pound and 12 ounces at 5 weeks of age. He lives at the Wild Cat Education and Conservation Fund in the heart of a redwood forest in California.
Continue reading “Bandhu”