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India >> Rajasthan >> Sawai Madhopur >> Ranthambhore National Park
Ranthambhore National Park Sawai Madhopur, Rajasthan
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Nestled at the Junction of the Aravali hill ranges and the Vindhyan plateau, 201 km SE of Jaipur, lies the Ranthambhore fort, more popular the world over, for the tiger reserve it harbors now, the Ranthambhore National park. Ranthambhore offers a unique blend of history and natural history to captivate the visitors. National Park is rich haven of wildlife. The park is situated in a vast arid tract of Eastern Rajasthan, and spans between the Chambal River in the South and Banas in the North. A highly uneven topography, it varies from gentle to steep slopes, from flat topped hills Indala, Doodh-Bhat and Chiroli of Vindhyan to the conical embankments and sharp ridges of the Aravalis, from vide and flat valleys to narrow, rocky gorges.

Once the hunting grounds of the Maharaja of Jaipur, and later the British, this area, spread over an expanse of 392.5 sq. km., was declared the Sawai Madhopur Wildlife sanctuary in 1955. In 1970 the hunting of tigers was banned by the Government of India, and when the first census of tigers indicated the shocking truth that no more than 1,827 tigers remained in the wild, Project Tiger was launched in 1973. Ranthambhore became one of the first nine parks to be designated as a Tiger Reserve. In 1973, it was declared the Ranthambhor Tiger Reserve under Project Tiger. An area of 274.5 sq km from within the Tiger Reserve was notified the Ranthambhor National Park in 1980.

 Orientation

The forest consists predominantly of Dhok trees (Anogeissus pendula). One also finds several species of Ficus, including banyan and peepal trees with their ever-spreading roots. In small pockets one finds mango trees as well as belts of evergreen forest full of Jamun trees. As one moves around one encounters great rock formations which give way to open savannah grasslands, ravines, perennial lakes and streams. Ranthambhore has surprisingly rich and diverse flora and fauna for a forest area as small as 400 sq km. One finds more that 300 types of trees, 50 aquatic plants and a large number of grasses, climbers and seasonal plants. In the park there are 272 species of birds, and 22 mammals. There are at least a dozen species of reptiles.

Other than the tiger, other predators found in Ranthambor are leopard, striped hyena, jackal, caracal and jungle cat. Also seen are sloth bear, sambar deer, chital (spotted) deer, nilgai (blue bull) antelope, wild boar, chinkara (Indian) gazelle, Indian hare, mongoose, common langur, palm civet, palm squirrel, porcupine, marsh crocodile and monitor lizard.

The park is very rich in birdlife as well. Painted stork, Black necked stork, White necked stork, Spoon bill, Green pigeon, Crested serpent eagle, Bonelli's eagle, Great Indian horned owl, Grey partridge, Sandgrouse, Bush quail, Peacock, Indian tree pie and Paradise flycatcher are among the resident birds of the park. In addition, during the winter months the park receives a variety of migratory birds like Grey lag geese, Pintails, Shovellers and Ruddy shelduck etc

Tiger conservation and the Tiger Watch
An NGO based in Ranthambhor and being headed by former Ranthambhor Field Director, Fateh Singh Rathore. Following the disastrous poaching incidents of the early 1990s Fateh set up Tiger Watch with the primary objective of conservation and protection of the wildlife at Ranthambhor Tiger Reserve and with the aim of saving & monitoring tigers, in specific. Tiger Watch has been augmenting the resources of the Forest Department to combat various problems faced in the management of this world famous Tiger Reserve.

www.tigerwatch.net

 Getting there

Location

Ranthambhore lies at the junction of the Aravallis and the Vindhyans in the south-east Rajasthan

Distance

434 km south-west of Delhi and 176 km south-east of Jaipur

 Fast Facts
Name Ranthambhore National Park Best Time To Visit December to February
Location Sawai Madhopur   Rajasthan   West   India   Best Sighing April to June
Open From 2008-10-01  To 2009-06-30 Type National Park
Temperature Summar   38-42      Winter   5-10      Rainy   28-32
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