Wildlife in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is an incredibly biodiverse island. It’s now become famous for the waters which surround it, which are home to whales, turtles, dolphins… just to name a few! But¬†above land is biologically rich too! Here are some friends I made ūüôā

crow and bicycle

I saw this guy everywhere. I mean, not this particular guy but his species, the crow, everywhere. It was unexpected to be honest, crows not being top of my list of expectations for tropical islands. I was thinking maybe parrots, birds of paradise, birds with colours. But there they are. And in what numbers! This little guy was hanging out by the fish market in Point Pedro, waiting for left overs.

toque macaque

Second most common must have been these monkeys. The toque macaque is everywhere on this island! Cheeky guys too and not just a little scary when they bare their teeth. These guys I found hanging around in Dambulla, a very sacred spot in Sri Lanka. There are over 150 Buddha statues spread out in 5 different caves, which date back to the first century BC. Not sure the monkeys are there to venerate him though.



Like¬†many other countries, Sri Lanka has a lot of stray dogs. This little flea ridden pup I found on my way to Delft island, the island seemingly made of coral. We quickly became friends, he was just too adorable and so playful. I definitely would have taken him home if I could… but then, I would have taken home a lot of¬†pets by now if airplane¬†regulations were more relaxed. Perhaps it’s a good thing they aren’t. I hope you’re doing ok, little dude.

grey langurs

These grey langurs are not as common as the toque macaques, but there are still plenty about. These guys were running amok in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka’s capital from the 4th century BC to the 11th century AD. If you ever get the chance to go, I can’t recommend it enough. The ruins are huge, I¬†cycled around them all day feeling like a female Indiana Jones with an SLR. I particularly loved the northern area, where the road gives way to jungle and you can get completely lost in among the old buildings, pools¬†and local wildlife.¬†Do stay away from the monkeys though, they bite ūüėČ


Last, but by no means least were the elephants. Elephants have been part of Sri Lanka since time began, they are native to the island and an important part of customs and traditions here. They aren’t so¬†common in populated areas, in fact, to see these guys I did a safari near Polonnaruwa in Kaudulla national park. Whilst I also saw storks, eagles, wild peacocks, monkeys, water buffalo and many others, these guys stole the show. I mean, just look at those schnozzles!

Lastly, I did of course edit all of these pictures when I got home. I processed the RAW files, opening up shadows, determining the warmth I wanted in the pictures, white balance, etc. Then I added gradients and subtle vignetting. Though the editing was relatively similar for each image, as the light conditions and settings varied a lot when I was taking the pictures, the end effects are quite different.



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