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Bharatpur Wildlife Sanctuary

Keoladeo Ghana National Park or Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary as it is more commonly known as, is a wonder of the natural world as the Taj Mahal is to the human world. Over 350 species of birds can be seen in this 29 sq km park, with a Bharatpur Wildlife Sanctuarythird of them being migrants, many of whom have made this park their wintering ground. As the park lies on the Central Asian Flyway of the Asia Pacific Global Migratory Flyway, it is a staging / wintering ground for a huge number of migratory waterfowl that breed in the Palearctic region. The Park has one of the world's most spectacular heronries, which harbor a large number of resident and migratory birds. According to Sir Peter Scott, founder of the World Wildlife Fund and the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, this is the world's best bird area. Roger Tony Peterson in a foreword to one of the most important books on herons," The Heron Handbook" by James Hancock and James Kushlan wrote, " Perhaps the most impressive spectacle of all is the great assemblage at Bharatpur Bord Sanctuary, near Agra, India, where half a dozen species of herons and egrets nest in association with painted storks, spoonbills, ibises and cormorants…."

In the year 1760 the Ajan Dam was constructed to save the town of Bharatpur from annual floods and the depression that came into existence after extraction of soil for building the dam turned into the Bharatpur Lake. This area was developed to serve as a duck shooting wildlife preserve for the royalty of Bharatpur. This area was declared to be a national park in the year 1982.

Prince Bhamji of Morvi state in Gujarat converted this area into a world famous wildlife reserve. Duck shoots were organised in the area every year by the rulers of Bharatpur, in honour of Viceroy Lord Curzon and his party on 1st December, 1902. The exploits of all visiting dignitaries since 1902 have been engraved on stone plaques standing near the Keoladeo temple. Largest number of birds (4273) were killed on 12th November, 1938, 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.

Keoladeo Ghana lies in a natural depression and is perhaps the only national park in India where the habitat has been created by a Maharajah, as compared to many of the other national parks of India, which were earlier the natural hunting preserves of the local kings. The wetlands now protected are not the result of erosion, plate tectonics, or drainage patterns, but rather the product of dams and dykes constructed by the Maharajah of Bharatpur in the 1890s. The park is an artificially created and maintained wetland site with water fed into the marshes twice a year from inundations of the Gambira river, which are collected in an artificial dam called Ajan Bund and then released through sluices, canals and dykes, thus creating a uique reseve for Indian wildlife providing such as resident and migratoy birds. The first inundation is made in mid-July, soon after the onset of the monsoon. The second takes place in late September / October when Anjan Bund is drained so that crops can be cultivated on its arable land in winter.

The park supports a population of 375 species of birds, numerous mammals and reptiles. With the onset of winter, migratory birds from all over world come here. They arrive by August and leave in February. Visitors include Coot Snipes, Spanish Sparrow, Red Crested Porhard, Rosy Pelican and Flamingo. The special attraction, however, remains the arrival of the rare Siberian Crane. The park is also rich in Pythons, Spotted Deer, Sambhars, Blue Bull, Black Buck, Jackals, Otters, Fishing Cats, Monitor Lizards.

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--> Bird Tours to North India
Duration : 12 Days / 11 Nights
Destination Covered : Delhi - Corbett - Nanital - Delhi - Bharatpur

--> Tiger Tour Packages
Duration : 15 Nights/ 16 Days
Destination Covered : Delhi - Sawai Madhopur - Rathambore National Park - Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary - Agra - Umaria - Bandhavgarh National Park - Kanha National Park - Nagpur -Delhi - Corbett National Park - Delhi

--> Wildlife Tours to North India
Duration : 16 Days / 15 Nights
Destination Covered : Delhi - Corbet - Ranthambore - Bharatpur - Agra - Jhansi - Khajuraho - Bandhavgarh - Kanha - Nagpur - Bombay

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