I like to imagine that I am a writer turned wildlife scientist turned writer, living in a landscape of rainforests and plantations in the Anamalai Hills of southern India. As a wildlife scientist, I focus on the ecology and conservation of tropical forests and wildlife—especially rainforest plants, birds, and mammals—particularly in the Western Ghats. My writing—creative nonfiction and essays on nature and conservation—has appeared in Fountain Ink, Orion, Earthlines,The Hindu, Scroll.in, The Wire, Deccan Herald, People’s Archive of Rural India, Outlook Traveller, and other newspapers, magazines, and blogs, besides occasional book reviews and op-ed or feature articles. I work in the Nature Conservation Foundation.
My book The Wild Heart of India: Nature and Conservation in the City, the Country, and the Wild was published in 2019 by Oxford University Press, India. In 2018, I co-authored Pillars of Life: Magnificent Trees of the Western Ghats with Divya Mudappa (Illustrations by Nirupa Rao and Sartaj Ghuman).
The Anamalai or Elephant Hills is both home and a place that deeply inspires my writing and research. It is from here that I travel to other places and in search of wider perspectives, only to return, as one always must, to home. This blog is a distillation of those journeys and experiences, from places far and near—essays, attempts, to put them down in words. Words that I hope carry meaning for you as they do for me. Words that you find worth reading.