Recently, Pankaj Sekhsaria has been in the news for all the right reasons. His book ‘Islands in a flux’ encapsulates his insights from two decades in the Andaman Islands and chronicles its most contemporary issues. He has always been very vocal about the need for conservation of the islands most precious natural resources. In an exhibition, Sekhsaria’s photographs were reproduced on silk giving it an ethereal effect. Have a look
The following photos were published in Outlook Traveller
Fiddler Crab Andaman
A Fiddler Crab in the mangroves at Mayabundar.
Fiddler Crabs are easily recognizable because of their assymetrical claws. Incidentally, only the male crab has this feature. The female of the species has both claws of equal size. Like all crabs, Fiddlers too, shed their shell as they grow. If they lose a leg or claw during the current growth cycle, it regrows when they get their new shell.
It is a shame, none of the Spiderman movies have not cashed in on the phenomenon of the ‘crab monster’!
The harmless crab though gets its name because of the way it eats. During the process, the smaller claw moves from the ground to mouth making it look like it was playing the larger claw as a fiddle. From bright yellow to purples, reds and orange, the crab’s colours are quite attractive against the pale mud backgrounds they live in.
South Sentinel Island
A boat heading towards the South Sentinel Island of Andaman.
The South Sentinal Island is uninhabited and has an abandoned light house. The remote location of the island has ensured that the corals around it are widely untouched by humans. This makes it a great diving spot.
You won’t find this diving spot on a typical tourist itinerary. You’ll have to make a special request to get here.
Hawksbill Turtle hatchling
Heading to the open sea: A newly hatched Hawks Bill turtle finds it way home. Hakws Bill is among the four species of turtles who come to nest in the various islands of Andaman. Unfortunately, this beautiful sea creature is now on the critically endangered list.
The turtle’s shells were popularly made to use decorative pieces which resulted in their population depletion. Therefore, we request you to never buy souvenirs from the islands which use their shells.
The turtle’s shell is their home – it doesn’t belong in ours.
Patterns in the sand Andaman Islands
A photo of the sand patterns at Tarmugli Island.
Tarmugli isn’t a name you’ll hear commonly among the islands. A part of the Rutland archipelago, the isolated island has mostly remained protected from the effects of weather. Tarmugli is covered with thick mangrove vegetation. You’ll see the beaches all picturesque with uprooted trees and sheet rocks.
Wandoor boat ride for a Turtle survey
The photo is taken as a crew sets out for turtle survey near Wandoor.
Other than nature taking its course, human actions have some of the turtle species on the endangered list. Every little conservation effort matters.
Mangroves in Mayabundar
The mangroves of Mayabundar
Mangroves have a huge role in protecting an island’s natural ecosystem. They shield the island from storms, hurricane winds, waves and floods. Their tangled roots hold together sediments, thus bringing down erosion.
Mangroves maintain water clarity by filtering out pollutants constantly. They act as a natural nursery to fishes and invertebrates. They are a natural home to several endangered species around the island too.
Thriving mangroves around the world have often formed the backbone of a healthy fishery industry around them.
Jelly fish in Andaman Sea
Jellyfish or jellies of the sea are soft-bodied creatures that often attract our awe by their sheer beauty. Did you know that Jellyfish are said to be around 700 million years old, making them the oldest multi-organ animals.
Rainforests of Andaman and Nicobar
Did you know that there are tropical evergreen rainforests, tropical semi-evergreen rainforests as well as tropical monsoon forests in Andaman and Nicobar.
Indian Thick Knees on the beach
Thick Knees on the beach. Andaman is home to several endemic birds. In fact, it has an entire island dedicated to a variety of parrots called Parrot Island!