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Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary

 
Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, also called Keoladeo Ghana National Park, is one of the finest bird parks in the world.
 


 
 
Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary is located about 50 kilometers west of Agra; it is also known under the name Keoladeo Ghana National Park. The name Keoladeo derives from an ancient Hindu temple, which stands at the center of the park. Ghana means dense, referring to the thick forest that used to cover the area.

More than 300 species of birds are found in this small wildlife park of 29 square kilometers. 11 square kilometers are marshes and the rest scrubland and grassland. The major attractions of tourists visiting the park are the numerous migratory birds, which come as far away as Siberia and Central Asia and spend their winters in Bharatpur, before returning to their breeding grounds. Migratory birds at Bharatpur are several species of Cranes, including the Siberian Crane, Pelicans, Eagles, Hawks, Ducks, Geese among many others.


The Park has well-defined treks, which can easily be covered on foot or on a cycle (the best way) or you can go in a rickshaw. They are available on hire. 

Rickshaw pullers have been trained by the park management in bird watching and are quite knowledgeable. Boats are also available on hire. A boat trip early in the morning or late evening is quite a rewarding experience. Do not forget to carry binoculars for watching the birds.


While many of India's national parks have been developed from hunting grounds of the former Indian aristocratic families, Bhratpur is probably the only case where the habitat has been created by a Maharaja. Bharatpur town used to be flooded regularly every monsoon, so in 1760 a dam was constructed to save the town from this annual flooding. The depression created by extraction of soil for the dam became the Bharatpur Lake.

In the beginning of the 20th century, this lake was divided into several portions, and a system of small dams, dikes, sluice gates etc. was created to control water level in different sections. This became the hunting preserve of the Bharatpur royalty, and one of the best duck shooting wetlands in the world. Hunting was prohibited by mid 60's and the area was declared national park in 1982 and a World Heritage Site in 1985.
 
 
Map of India
 

 

 

Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary
Ranthambore National Park
Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
Desert National Park
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