Express press service
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A panoramic photo of the rocky hills of Idukki’s Ramakkalmedu drenched in sepia hues at dawn, clicked by Thomson Saburaj, is one of the visual delights the ongoing ‘Beats of Nature’ exhibition offers the Museum auditorium here. The show features over 60 snapshots of wildlife and nature’s riches captured by nature enthusiasts Suresh Kurup, Biju PB, Sujith V Gopalan, Pradeep Valathungal, Bijulal MD and Thomson. One of the frames displays a tiny frog with glittering spots on its body, giving it the appeal of a cluster of stars in the night sky. Thus, it is called Galaxy Frog, says Sujith, who clicked the amphibian in the hills of Anaimalai in the southern Western Ghats. “The frog is only 2 to 3 cm tall and lives there in a microhabitat,” explains the herpetologist and independent conservation biologist.
“It is very rare to find them in their natural habitat. A similar species is the resplendent shrub frog, which is also the same size and endangered. The photographers, who come from a variety of backgrounds, met long ago at an event organized by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). Bonding around wildlife photography, they went on expeditions across India and Bhutan to document rare species of flora and fauna. “During our explorations, we focused on lesser-known and rare species, especially birds, reptiles and amphibians, and captured them after extensive research,” recalls Sujith.
“Every life form is as important as large mammals like lions, tigers and elephants. Conservation has revolved more around biggies. The population status of amphibians and invertebrates should also be examined. The photos on display are the results of our travels over the past five years. “The exhibition presents individuals that are rare in nature, such as the Indian wild dog, which is often confused with the Indian wolf, the band-throated Siva bird, the Indian screech-owl, the red-necked hornbill, the stork painted, the ultramarine flycatcher which measures 12 cm and the leucistic spotted deer.