Thursday, October 28, 2010

Less Seen Animals - Central Indian Tiger Reserves

The tiger reserves in Central India are major focus of attention as far as tiger tourism is concerned. This comes through high visibility of this extremely endangered animal in the country. Tiger chase in the parks have given a bad name to tourism by an large in these magnificent reserves.

Not surprising every one wishes to see the tiger. It is our beloved Earth's most coveted animal, charismatic to the bone and mystical. Irrespective of conservation ethos of our ancient scriptures we have managed the reverse. Wild tiger sighting is an experience of a life time. First time or last you never come out of it.

The reserves of Central India or MP have high density of tigers namely Kanha, Bandhavgarh and Pench. Besides they are intact ecosystem with amazing biodiversity. This is to be experienced in totality in order to enjoy nature. As interest in nature deepens a desire for holistic experience of eco systems is a natural precursor.

Every element of nature's wonderful creation excites and thrills. It gives meaning to our own existence on Earth. A life time is not enough to experience these pristine tiger havens in totality. But whatever more you experience is enough.

On tiger safaris other animals seen in the forests and grasslands are Nilgai, swamp deer (Kanha), sambar, spotted deer, langur, wild boar, jackal, wild dog, bison and oft barking deer. A leopard sighting is a thrill of the lifetime and so is that of the sloth bear.

Rarely seen is the mouse deer recently discovered at Kanha, four horned deer - endemic species, Indian wolf - highly endangered and hyena. It is most exciting to see the nightlife albeit night safaris in the park are not allowed. One can certainly go through on the common roads outside the park. Animals often seen on night rounds are leopards on prowl, sloth bear, jungle cats, civet cats, porcupine, fox, ratel, mouse deer? some birds like night jars, large owls, Eurasian thicknee. It is possible to see Hyena and Wolf at nighttime wherever they survive.

The reptiles are shy and extremely nocturnal, most commonly seen are the monitor lizard, python, cobra, krait, viper, rat snake, keelbacks and grass snakes. Many species of tortoise can be seen in ponds. The rivers in these tiger reserves do not hold mugger or gharial. They are found in Ken River Sanctuary near Panna National Park.

In India wild safaris hold an element of surprise. Animals en masse are rarely seen. A dull day can turn into a electrifying moment in one go. Trekking skills help a lot but it is luck that dominates for one and all.

The tiger reserves are places for exciting birding in Madhya Pradesh for birders. More than two hundred fifty avian species can be check listed. These are ideal destinations for forest birding in India.

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