While a lot of tourists flock to India to see beautiful Himalayas, the unique cultural traditions, the touristy monuments and to sample the taste of spirituality, there are a lot more reasons, why India should be on your radar.
One of them being the wild life. If you take a close look at the topography of the country, popularly known as a sub-continent within itself, there is no dearth of some extensive, rich and unique flora and fauna. Of all these, the most enticing and magnificent seem to be – TIGERS, Black Stripes or the Wild cat as it is popularly known.
Some facts about tigers:
- The tiger is the largest member of the felid (cat) family who sport long, thick reddish coats with white bellies and white and black tails. Their heads, bodies, tails and limbs have narrow black, brown or gray stripes
- Tigers have lost 93 percent of their historic range to human activities, including the clearing of forests for agriculture. Climate change, illegal wildlife trade and habitat loss are among the reasons that tigers are an endangered species.
- Tigers sport unique stripe patterns, much like humans have unique fingerprints.
- There were once nine subspecies of tigers: Bengal, Siberian, Indochinese, South Chinese, Sumatran, Malayan, Caspian, Javan and Bali. Of these, the last three are extinct, one is extinct in the wild, and the rest are endangered.
In a bid to conserve, preserve this national animal of India, the government of India (GOI) has undertaken a few steps. The GOI launched a program called ‘Project Tiger’ to save the endangered species in the year 1973. The country which started with 9 reserves, today boasts of approximately 45 sanctuaries. (Source: http://wiienvis.nic.in/Database/Tiger_Reserve_Database_7850.aspx)
Out of the total reserves present in India, here are some of the highly regarded tiger reserves in India. These regions are hugely popular, not only for the conservation efforts or the quality of these wild feline cats, but also because of the high probability of spotting the big cat. More importantly, these have become a haven for wild life lovers, adventures and photographers in the recent past. So when in India, next time visit these beautiful creations of nature here:
1. Jim Corbett National Park– Jim Corbett National Park or just Corbett, as it is known, enjoys a special mention in most of the wild life lovers itinerary. It is the oldest national park in India and was established in 1936 as Hailey National Park to protect the endangered Bengal tiger. So much, that it also features in school syllabus and programs. The national park has been named after a revered British hunter turned conversationalist Jim Corbett.
Unfortunately, when I visited this park, I couldn’t spot even a single tiger 😦
2. Ranathambore National Park: Ranathambore National Park is one of the largest national parks in northern India and widely enjoys fame as one of the best places to spot the majestic predator at any time of the day. A good time to visit this Tiger park is around November.
3. Bandhavgarh National Park: Bandhavgarh is one of popular national parks located in Madhya Pradesh, India. Apart from the high density of tigers, the region is also known to be a large breeding place for Leopards. The park derives its name from the most prominent hillock- which is believed to be given by Lord Ram to his brother, to keep an eye on Lanka, while on the journey to hunt down Ravana.
4. Pench National Park: Pench National Park is located in Madhya Pradesh. It derives its name from the Pench river that flows through the national park, dividing the park in two equal parts. It’s equally famous for water rafting. In fact, it also won an award for ‘Best Management’ in 2011.
One of these parks, is definitely on my bucket-list and soon enough I am off for it this year. Which one would you pick?
“Let’s catch up soon enough”
Image source: Google