Wildlife Resorts :
Rajasthan is a heaven 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 are rare while some are endangered.
The state is the home of tigers, black bucks, chinkara, the rare desert fox, the endangered caracal, the great Indian bustard, gavial, monitor lizard, wild boars, and porcupine. Migratory birds like the common crane, ducks, coots, pelicans and the rare Siberian cranes, imperial sand grouse, falcons and 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.
Sariska National Park :
Sariska became a sanctuary in the year 1958, 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 a total area of 788 sq. kilometers, with a core area of approx. 47sq kilometers. The carnivores of the area are panther, 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 peafowl, gray partridge, quail, sand grouse, tree pie, white-breasted kingfisher, golden woodpecker and great Indian horned owl. Visit: November & March is the best period to visit.
Ranthambore National Park :
Near the township of Sawai Madhopur, Ranthambore National Park is an outstanding example of Project Tiger’s efforts at conservation in the country. The forests around the Ranthambore Fort were once, the private hunting grounds of the Maharajas of Jaipur. The desire to preserve them was responsible for their conservation, and subsequent rescue by Project Tiger. The Park sprawls over an estimated area of 400 sq. kms. Steep crags embrace a network of lakes and rivers, and atop one of these hills, is the impressive Ranthambore Fort, built in the 10th century. The terrain fluctuates open bushland and impregnable forest, mostly of dry deciduous type. The entry point to the Park goes straight to the foot of the fort and the forest rest house, Jogi Mahal. The latter boasts of the second-largest banyan tree in India. The Padam Talab, the Raj Bagh Talab and the Milak Talab are some of the lakes in the area that attract the wildlife population. The entire forest is peppered with the battlements and spillovers of the Ranthambore Fort. Ranthambore is approachable both by rail (132 km) and road (180 km) from Jaipur. It is situated 14 km from Sawai Madhopur railway station on Delhi- Bombay trunk route. You can stay at the The Sawai Madhopur Lodge or in RTDC accommodation.
Keoladeo Ghana National Park :
One of the most spectacular bird sanctuaries in India, nesting indigenous water- birds as well as migratory water birds and waterside birds. More than 300 species of birds are found in this small park of 29 sq. km. of which 11 sq. km. are marshes and the rest scrubland and grassland. Sambar, chital, nilgai and boar also inhabit it. The name Keoladeo is derived from an ancient Hindu temple, devoted to Lord Shiva, which stands at the center of the park. ‘Ghana’ means dense, referring to the thick forest, which used to cover the area. In 1760 an earthen dam (Ajan Dam) was constructed to save Bharatpur town from the annual vagary of flooding every monsoon. The depression created by extraction of soil for the dam was cleared and this became the Keoladeo Lake. At the beginning of this century, this lake was developed, and was divided into several portions. A system of small dams, dykes, sluice gates, etc., was created to control water level in different sections. This became the hunting preserve of the Bharatpur royalty, and one of the best duck – shooting wetlands in the world. Hunting was prohibited by mid-60s. The area was declared a national park on 10 March 1982, and accepted as a World Heritage Site in December 1985.
Desert National Park :
The vast tracts of desert sands around Jaisalmer, with their wood fossils, have become the Desert National Park. The desert has a fragile eco-system that has a unique variety of wildlife species. These include the somewhat ungainly bird the Great Indian Bustard, which, because of this effort, has made a comeback in recent decades, though it is still on the endangered list.
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 land form 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, and wolf and desert cat. Sudashri forest post is the ideal place for observing the wildlife and 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 sand grouse, partridges, bee-eaters, larks and shrikes are commonly seen.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 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.
Tal Chapar Black Buck Sanctuary :
Tal Chhapar Sanctuary is a sanctuary located in the Churu district of Northwestern Rajasthan in the Shekhawati region of India. It is known for blackbucks and is also home to a variety of birds. It is a vast saline tract spread over 820 Hectares at a distance of 12 km from Sujangarh and 170 km from Bikaner (on Bikaner-Jaipur Road) where some 400 black bucks (the rare and vanishing variety of antelopes) can be seen with a background of mirage. Originally a game preserve of Maharaja of Bikaner, it was declared “protected area” under the Rajasthan Wild Animals and Birds Protection Act in 1962. It is interesting to see how the Bucks command their ‘harems’ and in what sportsman like manner they win or lose some of the inmates and the young ones are reared up.
Van Vihar, Ramsagar :
The breathtaking beauty of the park is spread across an area of about 60 sq. kms. The sanctuary can be divided into two parts namely Van Vihar & Ramsagar. Van Vihar, located on Vindhyan plateau, supports a rather open stunted growth of Dhok and Khair trees. Ramsagar part of the sanctuary has the picturesque Ramsagar Lake.
The sanctuary is inhibited by species like Sambhar, Chital, Blue Bull, Wild Boar, Sloth Bear, Hyena and Leopard. Ramsagar Lake is populated with fresh water crocodiles and a variety of fishes and snakes. White-Breasted Water Hen, Moor hen, Jacanas, Stilt, River Tern, Ringed Plover, Sand Piper and Herons (gray, and purple) are also quite common here. In addition to this, countless migratory ducks and geese also visit the lake.
Sanctuary Location Species Best Season :
Keoladeo Ghana Bharatpur Water Bird, Painted Storks, Open Bill Spoon, Bill Egrets. October to January
Jaisamand Udaipur Peacock, Spotted Deer, Sambhar, Sloth Bear, Wild Boar, Gazelle, Panther, Antelope, Mongoose & Birds. October to June
Sariska Alwar Tiger, Panther, Spotted Deer, Sambhar, Four-horned Antelope. October to June
Ranthambhor National Park Sawai Madhopur Tiger, Panther, Bear, Wild Boar, Sambhar, Spotted Deer, Blue Bull. November to May
Desert National Park Jaisalmer-Barmer Great Indian Bustard, Blackbuck, Chinkara. All The Year
Van Vihar, Ramsagar Dholpur Spotted Deer, Tiger. March to May
Van Vihar Mount Abu Cinkara, Porcupine October to January
Van Vihar, Darrah Kota Tiger, Panther, Spotted Deer, Sambhar, Wild Boar, Blue Bulls, Antelopes. March to June
Tal Chapar Bikaner Black Bucks, Antelopes. December To February
Title: Rajasthan Wildlife Tour