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Bharatpur India
 


Bharatpur - The Destination

Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary

Keoladeo Ghana National Park, more popularly known as the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary has one of the most abundant bird lives in the country. Truly a fantasy of feathers, it is that bird kingdom, where time takes wing. Two-thirds of the Park is submerged under water and the remaining one-third is covered in dry deciduous forests and widespread grasslands.

One of the finest bird parks in the world, Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary is a reserve  that   offers   protection  to  fauna  species  as   well. Nesting

indigenous water-birds as well as migratory water birds and waterside birds, this sanctuary is also inhabited by Sambar, Chital, Nilgai and Boar.

Supporting a population of over 375 species of birds, numerous mammals and reptiles, with the onset of winter, migratory birds from all over the world come here. They arrive by August and leave in February. Visitors include Coot Snipes, Spanish Sparrow, Red Crested Porhard, Hawks, Shanks, Stints, Wagtails, Warblers, Wheatears, Flycatchers, Buntings, Larks, Pipits, Rosy Pelican and Flamingo. The park also thrives in Pythons, Spotted Deer, Sambhars, Blue Bull, Black Buck, Jackals, Otters, Fishing Cats, Monitor Lizards.

Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary

Of all the migrants, the most sought after is the Siberian Crane or the great white crane, which migrates to this site every year covering a distance of more 64,000 kms. On the brink of extinction now, these birds number only a few hundred. There are only two wintering places left for this rare species - Feredunker in Iran and the Bharatpur Sanctuary. These majestic winter guests arrive in December and stay on till early March. Completely vegetarian they feed on underground aquatic roots and tubers in loose flocks of five or six.

Ironically this sanctuary used to be the hunting preserve of the Bharatpur royalty, and one of the best duck-shooting wetlands in the world! Hunting was prohibited only by the mid-60s, the area declared a national park on March 10, 1982, and accepted as a World Heritage Site in December 1985.

Bharatpur - Facts at a Glance

State : Rajasthan
Area : 29 sq. kms
Temperature : 37.0°C - 45.0°C (Summers)
7.0°C - 31.7°C (Winters)
Altitude : 250 mts
Rainfall : 69 cms
Best Season : October - March

History of Bharatpur

Keoladeo- the name derives from an ancient Hindu temple, devoted to Lord Shiva, which stands at the centre of the park. Ghana means dense, referring to the thick forest, which used to cover the area. The history of the area dates back in time when Prince Bhamji of Morvi state, Gujarat, used the area as a hunting preserve. Gradually, it became popular with the ruler of Bharatpur. On one occasion held in honor of Viceroy Lord Curzon in 1902, thousands of birds were killed and their exploits engraved on stone plaques standing near the Keoladeo Temple, standing tall in the heart of the Sanctuary.

The largest number of birds killed on 12th November, 1938, rose up to 4273 by Lord Linlithgow, Viceroy & Governor General of India and his party. After independence, this reserve was notified as a bird sanctuary but the former rulers of Bharatpur continued to enjoy their shooting rights over the area till 1972. The area was notified as a National Park in 1981 but made effective only in Novemeber, 1982.
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