Nature

a lizard yarn…

Predatory instincts work on an interesting dichotomy – stealth builds upon the slowest of movements and translates into a narrative of high speed leaving hardly any space between the transition… with the agamids, ‘tis the slow, tentative footsteps contrasted with a ferocious tongue, a tentative rustle between the bushes, never hastening when in attack… for the most part, these reptiles carry a rather diffident look – the head held up high at an angle and the lips pursed… such is not their nature though, for beneath the battle-armour like exterior resides a rather timid insectivore going about its business in recluse, one bug at a time…

Oriental Garden Lizard, Haldwani, Uttarakhand, India

I was observing a colony of Baya weavers going about the nest-building exercise in a rather frenzied manner when a flicker of golden hue registered on the corner of the eye, revealing an Oriental garden lizard creeping up the tree rather hesitantly, as if overwhelmed by the din around… it looked like a juvenile, both from the length of the scales as well as the unsettled demeanour… in the backdrop of an overcast sky, there wasn’t much of the dazzling multitude of colours that characterizes the species, yet the textures were enough to mesmerize…

Oriental Garden Lizard, Haldwani, Uttarakhand, India

One couldn’t really figure out if the creature was out looking for food or partaking in a lesson on ectothermy… it hung on to the tree for a while in this state of indecision, and then disappeared beneath a clump of lantana rather surreptitiously, having had enough of human attention and the racketeering of birds… ‘tis almost hermitic, such existence – save for the breeding season when there are territories to protect and partners to woo, leading to a multitude of striking colours and acts of flexing muscles – the pensive, brooding expressions on the lizard seem to hold a testament to the fact…

Musings on Oriental Garden Lizard, Haldwani, Uttarakhand

Author: Parth Joshi

Allured by the outdoors, the author is made up in parts of that quintessential lost soul wreathing under the pangs of biophilia in a desk job, a wannabe elegist mostly ending up in dungeons of poetasters and an optimist waiting for the senility of the modern world to fade away while sampling shoots and leaves. In saner times, he has a keen interest in areas pertaining to tourism, history, agriculture and climate change, especially with respect to historical interpretations, emerging technologies and future livelihoods. An avid trekker, runner, cyclist, birder and photographer, he is more often than not found gloating over anything hinterland, on foot or over computer monitors, and fantasizing solutions that can foster inclusive growth and sustainable livelihoods for communities at the grassroots.

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