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Last updated : Nov 2009
Wildlife
Wildlife India - TravelPuppy.com
The Indian peninsula is itself a continent, the geographical diversity of which has resulted in a wide range of wildlife, with more than 350 species of mammals and over 1,200 species of birds. There are 411 wildlife sanctuaries and 90 national parks in the country.

Each region offers something special; the hangul is only found in the valley of Kashmir in northern India, the rhino is restricted to isolated pockets along the Brahmaputra River in the east, Western India is the home of the last surviving Asiatic lions and the black langur is found in the Western Ghats.

2 of India’s most awesome animals, the Bengal (or Indian) tiger and the Asiatic elephant are still prevalent in most regions, though their population has been greatly reduced.

Most of India’s wildlife finds refuge in the more than 200 sanctuaries and parks throughout he country. The following list refers to many of the more important sanctuaries. Accommodation often needs to be reserved in advance, either by direct application or with the local State ITDC or with the authorities of the respective park.

Norhern India

Dachigam Wildlife Sanctuary (Kashmir)
Broad valley; mountain slopes; black and brown bear, rare hangul deer, brown bear, leopard; heronry.

Govind Sagar Bird Sanctuary (Himachal Pradesh)
Bird sanctuary with duck, teal crane, and goose.

Corbett National Park (Uttar Pradesh)
Himalayan foothills near Dhikala; Sal forest and plains; elephant, tiger, leopard and abundant bird life. Very good fishing in Ramganga River.

Dudhwa National Park (Uttar Pradesh)
Nepal border; sloth bear, tiger, and panther.

Valley of Flowers National Park (Uttar Pradesh)
When in bloom this ‘roof garden’ at 3,500 metres (11,500 feet) is a fabulous blaze of color. Permits are required for entrance to the park.

Sariska National Park (Rajasthan)
Approximately 200 kilometres (125 miles) from Delhi. Forest and open plains; cheetal (spotted deer), sambar (largest Indian deer), black buck, nilgai (Indian antelope), leopard and tiger; good night viewing.

Ranthambhor (Sawai Madhopur – Rajasthan)
plains and lakes; hill forest, sambar, tiger, chinkara (Indian gazelle), sloth bear, migratory water birds and crocodiles.

Bharatpur National Park (Keoloadeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary)
(Rajasthan)
India’s best bird sanctuary; many indigenous water-birds; huge migration from China and Siberia crane, stork, goose, birds, heron, snakes,etc.

Bandhavgarh National Park (Madhya Pradesh)
Located in the Vindhyan Mountains, this park has an abundance of wildlife including sambar, panther, and gaur.

Kanha National Park (Madhya Pradesh)
Sal forest and grassland; exclusive home of barasingha (swamp deer), tiger, gaur and cheeta.

Shivpuri National Park (Madhya Pradesh)
Open forest and lake; chinkara, chowsingha, (four-horned antelope), tiger, nilgai, water birds and leopards.

Western India

Krishnagiri Upavan National Park (Maharashtra)
Previously known as Borivli, this park protects a significant scenic area near Mumbai. Kanheri Caves and Vihar, Tulsi and Powai lakes; water birds and smaller species of wildlife. Lion Safari Park located nearby.

Tadoba National Park (Maharashtra)
Lake and teak forests; tiger, leopard, nilgai and gaur. Night-viewing of this national park is excellent.

Sasan Gir National Park (Gujarat)
Forested plains and lake; exclusive home of Asiatic lion, sambar, chowsingha, leopard, nilgai, chinkara and wild boar.

Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary (Gujarat)
Lake; indigenous birds including flamingo, and migratory water birds.

Little Rann of Kutch Wildlife Sanctuary (Gujarat)
Desert; herds of khur (Indian wild ass), caracal and wolf.

Velavadar National Park (Gujarat)
New Delta grasslands; large population of black buck.

Southern India

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary (Kerala)
Large artificial lake; elephant, gaur, black langur, wild dog, tortoises otters, and abundant bird life including hornbill and fishing owl. Boats offer good viewing.

Vedanthangal Water Birds Sanctuary (Tamil Nadu)
One of the most magnificent breeding grounds in India. Heron, cormorant, stork, grebe, pelican, and many others can be found here.

Point Calimere Bird Sanctuary (Tamil Nadu)
Well known for its flamingo, also for heron, curlew, teal, and plover, black buck and wild pig.

Pulicat Bird Sanctuary (Andhra Pradesh):
Grey pelican, Flamingo, tern and heron.

Dandeli National Park (Karnataka)
Park with bison, tiger, panther, and sambar. Easily accessible from Goa.

Jawahar National Park (includes Bandipur and Nagarhole National Parks (Karnataka), and the Wildlife Sanctuaries of Wayanad (Kerala) and Mudumalai (Tamil Nadu).
Extensive mixed forest; India's largest elephant population, leopard, gaur, muntjac, sambar, and giant squirrel. Birds include racquet-tailed drongo, barbet and trogon.

Eastern India

Kaziranga National Park (Assam)
Elephant grass and swamps; one-horned Indian rhinoceros, water buffalo, tiger, leopard, elephant, deer and rich birdlife. Elephant transport is available within the park.

Manas Wildlife Sanctuary (Assam)
On the Bhutan border, grassland, rainforest, and river banks; rhino, water buffalo, elephant, tiger, golden langur and water-birds; fishing is permitted.

Nameri National Park (Assam)
Water birds and Tiger; fishing is permitted.

Palamau Tiger Reserve (Bihar)
Sloping forested hills; leopard, tiger, sambar, elephant, jungle cat, rhesus macaque (monkey) and sometimes wolf can be seen here.

Hazaribagh National Park (Bihar)
Sal forested hills; sambar, cheetal, nilgai, leopard, tiger, and occasionally muntjac (larger barking deer).

Sundarbans Tiger Reserve (West Bengal)
Mangrove forests; deer, tiger, fishing cat, dolphin, crocodile, and rich bird life. Accessible by chartered boat.

Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary (West Bengal)
Tropical forest and grassland; elephant, rhino, and abundant bird life.

Similipal Tiger Reserve (Orissa)
Immense Sal forest; elephant, tiger, cheetal, leopard, sambar, muntjac and chevrotain.

Chilika Wildlife (Bird) Sanctuary (Orissa)
Migratory birds, siberian ducks flamingo, Teal Comorant and Teal Comorant.
Useful travel links
Wildlife of India more about wildlife in India
WildlifeSanctuaries & Parks wildlife parks and sanctuaries in India
Wildlife Tours in India information about wildlife tours in India