Sunday, November 17, 2013

Getting back...

Yes, plan to get back to writing...something I missed over the last few years....realize a lot of 'good' writing is getting lost over emails & facebook(??), so wondering if I can sit and peacefully pen down my experiences without the pressures of keeping it short  etc etc

Its predominantly been stories told thru my camera(Kyamera), my first love being a Olympus C-760 - a great camera unfortunately I lost it. And then, it was a 20+ zoom camera from Olympus, but the image quality wasn't close to the older one, and so after many a year, hoping to get back to writing & photography. Yes, have a new addition now, a Nikon D5100.

Its time to click and punch the keys!

Saturday, November 09, 2013

Fire Salamander

 Fire Salamander. Had a chance encounter with it when we took a path less traveled, along the hills near Bad Urach, near Stuttgart, Germany. Lucky for us, Shilpa shrieked and spotted it on our walking path.

Salamander are amphibians, with moist skin used for respiration. Slow movers, use poisonous gland secretions to fend of predators, and a tail that breaks of and wriggles confusing the predator while a escape is made. The regenerative capacity of the tail, limbs, eye lens & retina has been a subject of research for replication in humans.

Found mostly in central Europe in moist conditions under leafy litter or under tree trunks. They live up to 20 years, and in one instance upto 50 years in captivity. Named by Linnaeus in 1758 as Salamander Salamander.

It moved slowly, and was getting into a tree-trunk/crevice, and soon curled itslef and was immobile for a while. A wet day, with a leafy undergrowth, and a path not used much.

Nov 9th 2013 @Bad Urach, 12 53 pm, along with Prasad Akula, Manas Mandal & Shilpa Shripad.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Blow fly

Sep 28th, amidst a long weekend, and on a Ayudha pooja day, decided to cycle to Hoskote lake. The lake had some water....and I spent one hour looking around.....there was promise behind every bush, and secrets beneath the stones.

And, as I was gearing to start back, chanced upon these two fly on a twig. They sat there without flying away though I took hazzar macro pics.

Blow fly - the metallic body strikes you - the red & yellow in the head also stands out. These chaps can smell dead matter & dung for miles....I read 10 miles somewhere.....and the first thing they do is to lay an egg on it.....and soon start eating away the matter...the smell soon disappears.....the maggots hatch....and immediately start eating the decomposing matter...

This immediate egg hatching ability is made use by forensic detectives. Body found - highly decomposed - when was the murder committed ?? after 72 hours, it gets difficult, thats where the forensic entomologist steps in. And, figures out which developmental stage the blow flys are. The time stages of the developmental cycles are quite deterministic. And now, its 2+2 for Mr. Sherlock Holmes!

Next time, you see dung or dead matter, watch out for the blow flys and thank them for their good work!

Thursday, June 19, 2008


3:20pm, 23rd Sep 2006, Dodabetta, Krishnagiri, Tamilnadu

Friday, March 21, 2008

Gaping Hole

Thousands of stars, and a gaping hole!
I stumbled on this pic, and furthur reading pointed to some exciting info.
This is a Bok Globule. Dark dense clouds. One of the coldest objects in the sky with temperatures around -270 degrees (3 kelvins). The dark clouds have hydrogen, helium & some inter-stellar silicates, and are so densely packed, making it opaque at optical wavelengths.

But become transperent at infra-red wavelengths, showing the background stars.

In 1947, Bart Jon Bok declared that these objects lead to birth of stars!!!

The Blok globule in picture is called Banard-68, at around 400 light years from earth. As you notice with no other star in between, weighs twice the solar mass, and is half a light year across. Temperature is around -257 degrees (16 kelvin).

Banard-68 is at a preliminary stage of star formation. The inwardly gravitational pull is balanced by outwardly gas pressure. At some point this stability is lost, gravatational power wins, and matter would condense to form stars. Banard-68 is said to be marginally stable, and in a few million years could collapse on it self, and may lead to birth of one or two Sun sized stars.

So, ladies and gentlemen, coming up soon, in the place of the darkness would be dazzling stars!