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Savista, at Village Sanjharia, Off Ajmer Road, Jaipur 302042, Rajasthan

Catching the juicy worm – egrets have a field day at Savista!

White and gold field egrets following the tractor’s course

Savista’s annual agricultural calendar has begun.  A little over three weeks into the monsoon we, like the farmers in the community around us, began our seasonal agricultural activity.  This was after a year’s break during which we had let the fields lie fallow.

A section of our land has been ploughed and we have sown millets (bajra and  jowar),  three varieties each of lentils and grams/beans (moong, moth, gavaar), and sesame (til).  Just enough for our own needs. In this semi-arid region of India, these are the customary rain-fed crops that require nothing more than a few occasional showers for their growth.  Sown in the immediate aftermath of the first rains, they take root effortlessly, and will be ripe and ready for harvesting by the time autumn sets in (mid-October).

As the tractor moved, turning up the rich dark earth moistened by the rains, a riotous party erupted without warning.  Dozens of birds arrived from other parts of the farm and there was much excited hopping around and chirrupping as they helped themselves to what must surely have been a big haul of juicy earthworms and other insects that had been hiding in the soil.  As the tractor continued with its work, big field egrets flew in in a blaze of  white and gold  to join the party!

Field egret in flight
There is food for everyone at this party!