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WILDLIFE OF RAJASTHAN

Rajasthan is a haven for a wide spectrum of wildlife. The topography of Rajasthan ranges from the barren desert, scrub-thorn arid forests,rocks and ravines to wetlands and lush, green forests. And each of these areas houses a large variety of animal and bird life. Some of them rare while some endangered.

Home to tigers, black bucks,chinkara, the rare desert fox,the endangered caracal, the great Indian bustard, gavial, monitor lizard, wild boars, porcupine. Migratory birds like the common crane, ducks,coots, pelicans and the rare Siberian cranes,imperial sandgrouse, falcons, buzzards flocks to this state during the winter months. Typical areas representing each of the ecosystems have been earmarked as special areas wildlife. Rajasthan boasts of two National Parks, over a dozen Sanctuaries and two Closed Areas. Most of these areas are open to visitors round the year but are closed briefly during the monsoon.

BHARATPUR BIRD SANCTUARY(Keoladeo Ghana National Park )

Declared a National Park in 1983,this 29 sq km park is one of the world’s greatest heronries. Its shallow,fresh waer marsh attracts thousands of migratory birds. Over 10,000 nests of egrets,darters,cormorants,grey herons and storks hatch nearly 20,000 to 30,000 chicks every year. There is an infinite variety of migratory birds. Mammals like the sambhar,blackbuck,chital,nilgai,fishing cat,otter and mongoose also roam freely here. Best time to visit is August to February.

RANTHAMBORE NATIONAL PARK

This is the state’s most well-known tiger reserve under Project Tiger.Home of an ecpansive variety of other animals in is 392 sq km area, one can spot sambhar,cheetal,wild boar,leopard,sloth bear,jackal,hyena among others. Artificial lakes,dense forests and the shield of the Aravallis have helped to make this park very impressive and interesting. Best time to visit is Ocotber to April.

Getting there : By air: Jaipur (165 km) is the nearest airport. By rail : The Park is around 12 km away from Sawai Madhopur railway station, that lies on the Delhi to Bombay trunk route. By road : A good network of buses connect Sawai Madhopur with quite a few areas around. Where to stay : RTDC Hotel Jhoomar Baari, RTDC Hotel Kamdhenu, Sawai Madhopur Lodge, PWD Rest House, and Jogi Mahal which lies within the park premises, are some of the available means of accomodation.

THE DESERT NATIONAL PARK

The Desert National Park is an excellent example of the ecosystem of the Thar desert and its diverse fauna. Sand dunes form around 20% of the Park. The major landform consists of craggy rocks and compact salt lake bottoms, intermedial areas and fixed dunes which are quite suitable for the chinkara to move at high speed. The blackbuck is another common antelope of this region. Its other notable inhabitants are the desert fox, Bengal fox, wolf and desert cat.Sudashri forest post is the ideal place for observing the wildlife of Desert National Park and is the most suitable in the entire 3162 sq. kms. of this park for watching and photographing the activities of the animals from behind cover. Birdlife in this sandy habitat is vivid and spectacular. Birds such as the sandgrouse, partridges, bee-eaters, larks and shrikes are commonly seen. Demoiselle crane and houbara arrive in the winter.
The birds of prey seen here are tawny and steppe eagles, long legged and honey buzzards, falcons and kestrels. But the most outstanding of the avifauna is the great Indian bustard. This tall, heavy bird is an epitome of confidence and grace. It is good to see five or six bustards near Sudashri water hole.
This park is also very rich in reptiles. Spiny tail lizard, monitor lizard, saw sealed viper, Russel's viper, Sind krait, toad agama and sandfish are found in large numbers.18 kms. from Jaisalmer is the Akal Wood Fossils Park which is about 180 million years of age. Sea shells and massive fossilised tree trunks in this park record the geological history of the desert. .

SARISKA TIGER RESERVE

Sariska became a sanctuary in the year 1958. The sanctuary came under the project Tiger in 1979 and became a national park in 1982. It is located at Kankwari fort, near Alwar, on the Delhi Jaipur Highway. The terrain is predominantly hilly, as it lies in the Aravalli range. It has total area of 788 sq. kilometres, with a core area of approx. 47sq. kilometres. At last count in 1985, there 35 tigers were reported. Other carnivores of the area are the panthe, jungle cat, jackal and hyena. Three caracals were also reported during the last census in 1985. Other animals include the sambhar, chital, wild boar, hare, nilgai and umpteen porcupines. The birdlife comprises of the pea fowl, gray partridge, quail, sandgrouse, tree pie, white breasted kingfisher, golden woodpecker and great Indian horned owl.

NOVEMBER TO MARCH IS THE BEST PERIOD TO VISIT

OTHER WILDLIFE PARKS AND SANCTURIES IN RAJASTHAN

Bhensrod Garh Sanctuary

Darrah Sanctuary
Desert National Sanctuary Jaisamand Sanctuary
Mount Abu Sacntuary Kumbhalgarh Sanctuary
Cities of Rajasthan
Ajmer | Alwar | Banswara | Barmer | Bharatpur | Bikaner | Bundi | Chittorgarh | Deeg | Dholpur | Dunlod | Dungarpur | Jaipur | Jaisalmer | Jalore | Jhalawar | Jodhpur | Karauli | Khimsar | Kota | Mandwa | Mandore | Merta | Mount Abu | Nagaur | Nathdwara | Pushkar | Ramgarh | Ranakpur | Ranthambore | Samode | Sariska | Sawai Madhopur | Shekhawati | Sikar | Siliserh |Tonk | Udaipur
Rajasthan Packaged Tours
An Introduction to Rajasthan | Camps in Rural Rajasthan | Rajasthan Heartlands | Palaces in Rajasthan | Kingdoms of Mewar Marwar | Rural Rajasthan Tour | Delhi - Agra - Jaipur Tour | Rajasthan Wildlife Tours | Deser Safari in Rajasthan