Kanha National Park
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About Kanha National Park
Kanha National Park is situated in central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh and is one of the most beautiful and well managed of all tiger reserves in India. Tourists, nature lovers, wildlife photographers and families visit Kanha to enjoy the natural heritage and see the free occurring wildlife here. The magnificent big cat Tiger and one of the rarest deer the Hard ground Barasingha or Swamp deer also known as the – Jewel of Kanha national park are the major attraction between all.
Kanha national park was created in 1955 by a special law and, since then, it has dedicated itself in preserving a variety of animal species and biodiversity. Due to hard work and dedication of the forest department today Kanha is among the few most scenic and beautiful wildlife reserves visited by tourists from all over the world. This 'Tiger Country' is the ideal home for both predator & prey and sacrifice of tribal villages who have left at the time of resettlement from core area is a major reason behind this. The legend of the Kanha National Park has not reduced over time – it is still as beautiful as described by Rudyard Kipling in his famous novel – The Jungle Book but believe us when you see the King of the forest Tiger you will certainly say that Kipling was wrong in making this majestic animal a villain in his novel.
Kanha national park cum Tiger reserve is spread over an area of over 1,940 Sq. Kms. of which 940 Sq. Kms. is core area and the rest buffer, located in the Mandla and Balaghat districts of Madhya Pradesh. Tourism is conducted in 4 zones Kanha, Kisli, Sarhi and Mukki zones which comprises almost 20% of total area. This is one of those national parks where buffer forest zone hasbeen declared, a decision which helped the forest department in saving the forest and its denizens.
The major feature of this region's interesting topography is the horseshoe shape valley, the whole park area is surrounded by the spurs of the Mekal range. The Surpan River meanders through Kanha's central Maidans (grasslands also known as meadows) that cover the extensive plateau. Sal and bamboo forests and rolling grasslands (maidans), are by far the most striking features of this region where sighting Swamp deer (Barasingha), Sambhar, Spotted deer, Gaur, Tiger, Leopard,Sloth Bear and other denizens of jungle is common.
Bamhani Dadar, the highest point within the reserve is worth a visit for its panoramic view of the reserve especially at sun rise or sun set. Just imagine, the feeling of seeing the king of the jungle – Tiger, on an evening stroll or taking a nap under shade of tree or may be tigress training its cubs the nuances of jungle life. I am sure this sight will change your attitude and imagination wherein we recall Tiger as Sher Khan the villain. He is truly a king.
It is connected with other tiger reserves like Bandhavgarh National Park, Pench National Park, Nauradehi wildlife sanctuary, etc. with corridors which helps the wildlife in moving around the landscape. Kanha has a history of protection which is second to none and its management team from the lowest cadre of guards / workers to Field Director sitting at the top work day and night to save this beautiful natural heritage for
coming generations. Today this national park is so well known amongst conservationists and public at large as a gene pool of bio diversity that it needs no introduction. Tourism industry and lodges in the area, along with villagers and management try there best to support the government in its endevour of saving flora and fauna of kanha.
Major Wildlife Attractions of Kanha
At Kanha you can enjoy the creations of God, free roaming wild animals in its all its color and splendor. Tiger - the king is certainly the first followed by Leopard, Gaur, Sambhar, Chital, Barasingha, Barking deer, Black buck, Slothbear, Jackal, Fox, Porcupine, Jungle cat, Python, Hare, Monkey, Mongoose, etc., including many birds, reptiles, insects and butterflies.
The birds species include Storks, Teals, Pintails, Herons, Egrets, Peacock, Pea fowl, Jungle fowl, Spur fowl, Partridges, Quails, Doves, parakeets, Green pigeons, Cuckoos, Rollers, Bee-eater, Hoopoes, Drongos, Warblers, Kingfishers, Woodpeckers, Finches, Orioles, Owls, and Fly catchers amongst many others. Kanha national park is known as bird watchers paradise also with more than 270 species.
However, if one animal species were to represent Kanha, it would almost certainly be the Hard ground Barasingha or the swamp deer. This species of Barasingha (commonly known as swamp deer) found at Kanha is only one of its kind, as they have adopted themselves to the plains of central India and inhabit the large open tracts of grass amidst the forests of sal and bamboo. A few decades ago, the Barasingha was faced with extinction but conservation measures taken by the forest department saved them and today their population has risen from meager 66 to around 400.
Kanha wildlife reserve is a paradise for nature lovers and wildlife photographers who can spot and photograph more than 22 species of mammals, 117 species of butterflies, 27 species of birds along with other flora and fauna in this well protected forest. Sal and Bamboo is the most common species of trees found in this world famous tiger reserve along with hundreds of trees, plants, shrubs and bushes which have medicinal properties.
A very common question always asked is: How many tigers are there at Kanha? Not an easy one to answer as taking an exact count of wild animals is not practical but the forest department works out an estimate by co-relating many different methods and expect Kanha forests are home to around 90+ tigers at present.
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