the greatest benefits of Orissa s vast expanses of unspoilt
natural landscape has been its ability to offer a protected yet
natural habitat to the states incredible wildlife.Apart from
the Nandankanan Zoo and sanctuary and Similipal National Park, there
are atleast eighteen smaller sanctuaries which are home to a wide
variety of flora and fauna ,bird life reptiles and water creatures.Some
of the most important experiments of wildlife conservation are taking
place in these natural habitat, giving the tourists an excellent
opportunity to see natures bounty, propagated in an environment
that is as healthy as it is beautiful.
Located in the mangrove forest in the coastal belt of Orissa, the
Sanctuary has protected the estuarine crocodile since 1975. Further
down at Gahirmatha, olive ridley, sea turtles come to nest by millions
from south America. This region was converted to a national park
in 1998. Numerous migratory birds come to nest in the mangrove islands.
The sanctuary is 100 km via Kendrapara & Rajnagar and 160 km
The sight of one of the most fabulous vistas of river and forest,
the Satakosia gorge where the great Mahanadi river crashes in with
monumental force is a dizzyingly enervating experience for the visitors.
The meandering pace of the sensuous river,22 kms of thick forest,
offers scenic delight of the frothing, boiling water, as it wends
its way through the fabulous gorge, considered to be one of the
most enchanting spots in the world. It is the ideal place for boating,
angling and other adventure sports.
The gharial sanctuary at Tikarapara is a must see for wildlife
fans. Located at about 211 kms from BBSR and 58 kms from Angul,
it offers forest bunglow accommodation at strategic places. If you
want to camp inside the sanctuary you need special permission to
Mayurbhanj district is the home of one of the mportant national
parks not only in Orissa but also in the country.Spread over an
area of 2750 kms.the park was specially chosen by project tiger
for continuing the onerous task of conserving for the countrys
deteriorating tiger population.One of Indias tiger reserves
Similipal has over more than 95 tigers within the lavish bounds
of the sanctuary. Leopards, elephants, Mugger crocodiles and numerous
reptiles abound here. Over 231 species of birds people the forest
and waterways in the park.
A short distance from the capital city, Bhubaneswar, the Nandankanan
zoo lies in the splendid environs of the Chandaka forest, along
the rippling waters of the Kanjia lake.It also contains a botanical
garden and part of it has been declared as sanctuary.
Famous for its white tiger population ,Nandankanan or the Garden
of Gods has become a hot family favorite ,with visitors getting
an excellent opportunity to enjoy seeing these regal animals in
their natural glory- in an environment conductive to their growth.
Over 67 kinds of mammals, 18 varieties of reptiles and 81 species
of birds coexist in the deeply forested boundaries.
The zoo enjoys an excellent reputation internationally, forsuccessfully
breeding black panthers,gharial crocodiles and white tigers in captivity.
For the first time ever, a captive breeding center was created for
gharial crocodiles.This important task was also facilitated by the
gift of an adult male from the Frankfurt zoo.
White tiger Breeding
One of the rarest
creatures in the world the regal white tiger received a new lease
of life with the important research and concerted efforts initiated
to try and breed them in the natural environs of Nandankanan.
In 1980 on a day full of excitement and jubiliation the first litter
of white tigers were born to Deepak and Ganga, two normal tawny
tigers. Subsiquent litters of white tigers have been distributed
to zoos both at home and aboard.
Currently Nandankanan is home to over 34 white tigers.
Endangered species such as the Asiatic lion, 3 Indian Crocodiles,
Shanghai lion-tailed macaque, Nilgiri langur, Indian pangolin, mouse,deer
and countless birds, reptiles and fish have been breeding successfully
Some of the other attractions of Nandankanan are the 34 aquaria
which are home to a large variety of fresh water fishes. The reptile
parks cave like entrance is guarded by a lifesize dinosaur,Inside,
numerous species of crocodiles, lizards turtles and snakes share
the park with natural ease.
The rope way connecting the zoo with the botanical garden over
the lake, the boating facilities and the toy train for children
have added new features.
The Chandaka Elephant Reserve
Only one of its kind it is perfect for ecotourism activities.Apart
from the fabulous elephants, Cheetal, Bear, Peafowl, Sambar, and
numerous other animals roam about doing their daily business unhampered.
Lakhari valley sanctuary
Located in Ganjam, it has a huge concentration of elephants and
other wildlife. Black bucks abound in the Bhetnai regionl.
About 35 kms from Bhawanipatna, the dist. Hq. Of Kalahandi, on Bhawanipatna
Thuamula Rampur roud is Karlapat famous for charming wildlife. Tigers,
Sambarsm Leopards, Gaur and Chitals have rich presence in these
Other regions such as Debrigarh and Sunabeda are in wildlife too.
Ushakothi Wildlife Sanctuary
Established in 1962 over a forest area of about 285 square kilometres,
the Ushakothi Sanctuary is situated at a distance of about 22 kilometres
from Sambalpur. To the west of the Sanctuary lies Hirakud dam. Principally
comprising of dry deciduous forest type, floral species like sal,
sandalwood, arjun, neem, acacia, casuarinas are of frequent occurrence.
The fauna includes, amongst others, tigers, elephants, sambar leopards
and bison. Presently there are about 15 tigers and 35 elephants
in the sanctuary. It is rich in avifaunal wealth and the main attraction
of this sanctuary are racket tail drangos and flying squirrel. For
night halts there is one two roomed forest rest house inside the
sanctuary. The reservations can be done through the Divisional Forest
Officer of the same sanctuary, Bankura District, Sambalpur. The
nearest town and railwaystation is Sambalpur and the nearest airport
is at Bhubaneswar about 300 kilometres away. The best time to visit
the sanctuary is between October and May.
Main Wildlife Found: Tiger, Lepoards, Sambar
Best Time to Visit October to May
Information on wildlife tours, wildlife viewing, wildlife park and
nature of Orissa - India