Bandhavgarh National Park, the most popular national parks in India is located in the Vindhya Hills of the Umaria district in Madhya Pradesh. Declared as a national park in 1968 the Bandhavgarh National Park is spread across the area of 105 km². The name Bandhavgarh has been derived from the most prominent hillock of the area of Umaria. The area of Bandhavgarh is being flourished with a large biodiversity, the place which is also being famed to grip highest density of tiger population in India. Similarly, the park also beholds the largest breeding population of leopards and various species of deer. Over the years, the park has shown a great number of increases in the count of the tiger species and this is the reason why tiger tours is so famed to attract large amount of tourists at its vicinity.
The park has been divided into three major zones named as Tala, Magdi and Bamera out of which the Tala zone attracts major number of tourists by offering the tiger sighting opportunities. The park authorities are also focusing on the Magdi Zone by providing more opportunity to spot tigers. Elephant shows are also organized in Magdi zone of the Bandhavgarh national park to increase the chances of spotting the elusive king of the jungle.
Bandhavgarh National Park consists of mixed vegetations ranging from tall grasslands to thick Sal forest and so is the perfect habitat of variety of animals and birds. Due to varied topography, the Bandhavgarh national park provides ample opportunity to spot the majestic Indian tiger and some rarely seen animals like leopard and sloth bear. Due to high wildlife sighting it is becoming popular amongst tourists visiting India.
Wildlife in Bandhavgarh
There are more than 22 species of mammals and 250 species of birds. Common Langurs and Rhesus Macaque represent the primate group. Carnivores include the Asiatic Jackal, Bengal Fox, Sloth Bear, Ratel, Gray Mongoose, Striped Hyena, Jungle Cat, Leopard and Tiger. The artiodactyls frequently sighted are Wild Pigs, Spotted Deer, Sambar, Chausingha, Nilgai, Chinkara and Gaur. Mammals such as Dhole, the smallIndian Civet, Palm Squirrel and Lesser Bandicoot Rat are seen occasionally. Among the herbivores, Gaur is the only coarse feeder. There are two main ways of getting about in the park- in a motor vehicleoron elephant back. Many of the animals are now accustomed to both; evenso,it is best to talk quietly and not make rapid movements. Jeep safaris are best undertaken from dawn until about 10am and from about 4pm until dusk, as the animals are most active during these periods. A Forest Department guide must always accompany you. This guide will be able to direct you and point out wildlife. Elephants are used every morning by the Forest Department for Tiger- tracking. If a Tiger is found, then the elephant will take you directly to the Tiger either from the lodge or from a nearby point reached by jeep/car.
Getting a closer view of the wild creatures in the dense jungles of Bandhavgarh brings immense pleasure and enthusiasm among the tourists but a proper care and instructions are equally important for a safe and protected safari trip. For your knowledge, there are generally two main ways of getting about in the reserve; either in a motor vehicle or on an elephant back. And the pleasing fact is that many of the animals are accustomed to either of the mediums and don’t get annoyed of it but still it is advisable to talk quietly and to avoid making rapid movements.
- If you are choosing for the jeep safari, it should be best undertaken from dawn until 10 am and from about 4 pm until dusk, as most of the animals are active during these periods.
- A forest department guide must always accompany you who will be able to direct you and point any particular wild species.
- Elephant safari is the safest medium for tiger tour and is preferred mostly by the forest department. If a tiger is found, then the elephant will take you directly to the tiger either from the lodge or from a nearby point reached by jeep/car.
- You must pick safe and comfortable clothing so that you can find easy movement. Preferably cotton is the perfect choice which is safe and comfortable in every respect. Additionally, the color of the cloth should not be too bright to catch the attention of the animals (since it may disturb them) but a camouflage color can be the good option.
- You must pay attention to your movements and activities that should surely not disturb the wild creatures.
- Carrying almost every necessary item can be very helpful for you but mind it you should not be over-luggage. This can help you to avoid the extra burden of carrying weight and you can enjoy your trip completely by avoiding fatigue.
- Carrying first aid ailments while travelling is a smart move as you never know when you will meet any inconveniences while enjoying jungle trip.
- Photography is the most important part of any kind of wildlife tour when you can click the special moments and take them along with you. But while clicking on the object, your aim should be not to disturb them and you should silently click their shots.
- You must be patient while observing the wild creatures and should note down their movement, behavior and features for your records.
- Observe the birds carefully with a constant eye and be active throughout the observation since you are going to read the movements of nature’s most active creature.
- Your observation should include everything, right from their movement, appearance and voice that will certainly help you to distinguish every species from another.
- You must keep a permanent record of your observation so that you can make a careful distinction of the color and pattern of the birds, their hood shape, the size and shape of their beaks and wings and of course if possible their flying style and movements.
- Your observation should also include the feeding habits and their style of eating.
- Observing the general habitat, climate and the regions where the most common birds are found will definitely increase your knowledge of birds and will complement your bird-watching.
- Above all a patient and careful observation and keeping a documented record of all of it will bring about a successful birding trip in Bandhavgarh which is the most perfect location for almost more than 150 species of birds.