Posts Tagged ‘Wildlife Sanctuaries in India’

Wilderness of Corbett National Park-Part I

Posted on December 6th, 2010 by Pooja Chaudhary  |  Comments Off

 Ghariyal Ghariyal

“Running, running incessantly at a fast pace as if a participant of a rat race. We are absorbed in the thoughts of worldly pursuits and hardly listen to what our heart says. We think that heart can wait, as of now only worldly pursuits is the bait. What about the dreams of the heart? Brush them aside, again they can wait, seems it is their fate. Stop for a second, think, of what use would be the treasure of this world if it makes us eternally numb to the matters of the heart?”

As usual I sat down to write a poem but to my surprise I ended up writing the above piece. I had nothing of this sort going on in my mind but may be there was something my heart wanted to convey. I am not a ‘worldly pursuits’ offender but I am more soft on the heart than on the mind. So after writing the above piece unintentionally, I realized that my heart desired something and I absolutely knew what it was- a break from the drudgery of daily life, a tour to a relaxing place.

Wildlife parks as a holiday destination have always been too high on my list. I decided to go to the Corbett National Park and fortunately my sister and her lovely kids joined me. We drove to the Park and were booked at the Wood Castle Resort which has been my favorite for years. Sprawling in acres of land, this resort is located on the banks of an ever flowing river. Amidst gorgeous greenery and peaceful environment we were enjoying life and nature.

Early morning we embarked on the jungle safari on the jeep. As we ventured into the forests I was overwhelmed with the colors and a distinct aroma of the park. I simply loved it as it was soothing to the senses. Corbett National Park is one of the most famous wildlife destinations of India. Covering an area of 520 sq km, the Park is located in the majestic Himalayan foothills in Uttaranchal. Established in the year 1936, the Park came under Project Tiger Scheme in 1973. The Park is famous for tigers, crocodiles and leopards. A variety of other wildlife including the bird species are also found here. The Park got its name from the renowned author and wildlife conservationist Jim Corbett who played an important role in establishing this park.

The first attraction of the Park we saw was a large herd of Spotted Deer. Among the herd we spotted a small baby deer. It looked very sweet and I was amazed at its activeness. It was jumping around playing and eating, unaware of our presence. As we moved further we were greeted with the sight of Himalayan Black bear, sambar and some peacocks. We even got a chance to see the peacock dancing. It was a sight to behold.

Majority of the vegetation of the Park consists of tall Sal trees peppered by many streams. Every now and then we could sight some or the other animal, especially the herbivores. But the kids were eagerly waiting for tiger. Our guide was scanning the surroundings with his eagle eyes and suddenly pointed towards a beautiful bird called green bee eater. It is a beautiful bird with bright green color. We also saw blossom headed parakeet, dragonflies and red jungle fowl.

As we drove deeper into the forest, trees gave way to the grassland. There we saw a herd of elephants and the star attraction of that herd was a small baby elephant. Kids were too excited to see the elephants. Then we stopped at Dhikala to gorge on some food as we had started early from the resort without breakfast. Dhikala is the best region of the park where the chances of sighting tigers and other animals are bright.

Then we continued our wildlife journey and saw wild boar, jungle cat and some more birds. Next we stopped at high banks to catch the sight of gharials lazing in the sun. We captured them in our camera. As we neared the end of our journey the kids asked me about the tiger. I smilingly said we had a bad luck on the tiger front but we must feel good that we had the opportunity to see so many different wildlife species. They smiled and said “ok, better luck next time”. This was the end of our morning safari. We left for the resort with a hope to sight a tiger in the evening safari.

Keoladeo National Park- The Birds Paradise

Posted on February 11th, 2010 by Pooja Chaudhary  |  Comments Off

 Bharatpur National Park Bharatpur National Park

Beautiful, colorful and vibrant! Birds teach us a lot about life! My torrid affair with birds bring me to Keoladeo National Park time and again. It was indeed a time stopping experience to witness the drama of birds in one of the world’s famous sanctuaries. The other day I was reading a nature based book “Srishti” in which I came across some information on birds by S. Baker. Dr Salim Ali, the father of ornithology in India. It read the bird is known to pair for life. ‘The cranes are most affectionate birds, pairing for life’. Isn’t it interesting!

Keoladeo National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the incredible state of Rajasthan. Sprawling over an area of 232 sq km, the Park is also known as Bharatpur National Park. With its picturesque landscape, beautiful scenery, impressive wildlife, Keoladeo National Park is a great place to visit. It is a home to around 370 species of birds. The endangered Siberian cranes are also spotted here during winters.

It was a dream tour for me as I treated my senses to a variety of enchanting birds. I rented a bicycle to explore the Park. One of the interesting scenes I saw was a pair of cranes playing or fighting for twigs. Till the end I could not make out whether they were playing or fighting. Anyway it was interesting to watch. As I moved further I saw spider webs at a distance. I immediately stopped the bicycle and went close to it to observed it from close quarters. The web was hanging between two small plants with some dew drops shining brightly. At the corner of the web I spotted two spiders with yellow and white dots. I had no clue about its species but anyway they looked awesome.

As I was scouting for birds at a water body my gaze suddenly hit a python who, I guess, was sleeping or may be sunbathing. I immediately took a few steps back for safety reasons but at the same time it was a moment to behold. Without disturbing it I moved further in search of other wildlife. Then a few meters ahead I sighted Rosy Pelican, Spanish Sparrow, Red Crested Porhard and Flamingo. I wondered how wonderful these creatures of nature are!

As we moved on, I and my guide Sher Singh were greeted with the sights of cormorants, kingfishers, geese, herons, woodpeckers, parrots and egrets. I was seeing parrots after a long time. I remember when I was a kid parrots were quite common but today we rarely see them in our environment. Today sighting a parrot is no less exciting than the sighting of a tiger.

I was ecstatic at the sight of all the birds and other wildlife I saw in the Park. With cherished memories I came back to the Bharatpur Forest Lodge which is located within the Park and is run by the government. The next morning I woke up to the melodious chirping of birds. It was such a heart warming experience. This ended my Keoladeo National Park tour but my affair with wildlife continues.

Kaziranga Wildlife Sanctuary – World Heritage Site

Posted on August 27th, 2009 by Pooja Chaudhary  |  Comments Off

Kaziranga National Park is a World Heritage Site, which I personally think must be visited at least once. But

Rhinoceros

Rhinoceros

fortunately this was my second visit to the Park and this time my expectations were also higher than before. The memories of my past visit to the Park are still fresh, just like the Park. The Park is no less than a paradise for wildlife lovers as one can witness a variety of wildlife such as leopard, Asiatic Water Buffalo, Royal Bengal Tiger, Great Indian One-horned Rhinoceros, Wild Elephant, Python and a range of resident and migratory birds.

I was booked in Aranya Lodge, managed by Assam Tourism located in close vicinity to the Park. The views of gorgeous green patches and brown vegetation were awesome. I opted for Jeep safari. From my past experience I knew that the Park is divided into four ranges – Burapahar, Baguri, Central and Eastern and the Central range is the most promising region for wildlife sighting. With less time in my hands, I decided to explore the central range and the Baguri range (known for birds).

Sprawling over an area of 429 sq km, the Park’s landscape mainly consists of

ElephantElephant

tall and short grasses, dense tropical moist broadleaf-forest, swamp and rivers. As we moved into the Park we spotted a herd of hog deer. As we moved further we saw a herd of elephants with young calves. It was a kodak moment. Next, we were greeted with the sights of Bar-headed Geese feasting on something. The next sight was simply overwhelming. A python was relishing his catch. Our next interesting sight was the sight of sunbathing tortoises.

We ventured deep into the forest in the Baguri Range where the sights of several beautiful birds were waiting for us. I was elated to see Pond herons, Open-bill Storks, Cormorants, Fish Eagles, Black-necked stork, Pied Kingfishers and many other bird species. While exploring this range we saw Great Indian Hornbill, Water Buffalo, Great Indian One-horned Rhinoceros. While on our way back to the lodge, Ramesh told me stories about Rhinos and Wild Elephants running after tourists. So it is adviced not to get down from safari vehicles for shots from a close quarter.

Although my visit to the Park had ended but the memories were flashing in my mind at a lightning speed.