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Nagarahole is named after Nagarahole (Cobra river in the local language, Kannada), a winding river which runs eastwards through its centre. Situated in the two districts of Mysore and Kodagu in the state of Karnataka. It was originally constituted into a sanctuary in the year 1955 covering an area of 258 sq. Kms and subsequently enlarged to include the adjoining areas of Mysore district and now extends over an area of 643.39 sq. kms which was given the status of a National Park in 1983.

Nagarhole National Park is a national park located in Kodagu district and Mysore district in Karnataka state in South India. This park was declared the thirty seventh Project Tiger tiger reserve in 1999. It is the apart of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and together with Bandipur National Park (875 sq. kms) and Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary (325 sq. kms) to its South East and Wayanad (350 sq. kms) to the South-West, is one of the last remaining and best protected habitats for endangered species like the Elephant and the Tiger, It is under consideration by the UNESCOWorld Heritage Committee for selection as a World Heritage Site. Rich in wildlife, jungle and boasting a scenic lake, Nagarhole National Park, is one of Karnataka’s best wildlife getaways, containing good numbers of animals including tigers and elephants. Flanking the Kabini River, it forms an important protected region that includes the neighbouring Bandipur National Park and several other reserves.  These forests also consist of three major predators of the region – tiger, leopard and dhole or wild dog, all three co-existing in high densities. 

stray_cattle nagarhole-national-park-tiger image_485_Nagarhole-National-Park_003

Other animals that have made their habitat in Nagarhole are Indian bison, porcupines, jackals, hyenas, Sloth bears, and not to mention Niligiri tahrs and Niligiri langurs, among many others. The Kabini River and several smaller streams running through the forest provide great views of the natural landscape and as well as ample opportunities to spot various fauna out for a drink.

short history of the park :

Originally the forest area was the private hunting sanctuary for the Mysore royals. In 1955 the two adjacent forest ranges ( Mysore and Nagarhole) combined to form the Nagarhole National Park. Later the park is named after the late prime minister of India, Rajiv Gandhi. The park derives its name from naga, meaning snake and hole, referring to streams. It was upgraded into a national park in 1988. The park was declared a tiger reserve in 1999. The Kabini River separates the Nagarahole National Park from the Bandipur National Park. Besides the Kabini, there are other rivers flowing in the vicinity of the park and these are the Lakshmana and Teentha rivers. The park is dotted with enchanting greenery and forest cover, coupled with waterfalls and a wide array of wildlife.

Climate & Rainfall :

The summer (March to May) temperature slightly crosses 30°C mark. The brief winter, which lasts from November to January, has temperature plummeting to 14°C. Monsoon is erratic, but it generally rains from June to September. The park receives an annual rainfall of 1,440 millimetres (57 in).

What to See In Nagarhole :

There are several resorts near the park that offer panoramic views of the park and its wildlife. Tourists have to take jeeps and vans run by the forest department accompanies by an expert guide while moving through the park. The park also has innumerable observation towers that help you have a closer look at the wildlife residing in it. Enjoy trekking through the park surrounded by exquisite variety of flora and fauna.

1280px-Nagarhole_National_Park,_Kodagu_6898 Driving_through_the_Nagerhole_National_Park Leopard_in_Rajiv_Gandhi_National_Park

Flora :

The vegetation here consists mainly of North Western Ghats moist deciduous forests with (teak and rosewood predominating in the southern parts. There is Central Deccan Plateau dry deciduous forests with Pala indigo and thorny wattle towards the east. There are some sub-montane valley swamp forests with several species of the Eugenia genus. The upper tree canopy is dominated by Terminalia tomentosa in association with Tectonia grandis, Dalbergia latifolia, Pterocarpus marsupium, Lagerstroemia lanceolata, Anogeissus latifolia, Adina cordifolia, Boambax malabaricum, Schleichera trijuga, Ficus sp. and others. The lower canopy has Kydia calycina, Emblica officinalis, Gmelina arborea etc. Several shrubs belonging to Solanum, Desmodium and Helicteres sp. etc. are abundantly found but weedy shrubs like Eupatorium and Lantana now dominate. These forests have some conspicuous tree species such as golden shower treeflame of the forest and clumping bamboo

Fauna : 

The park protects the wildlife of Karnataka. The important predators and carnivores in Nagarhole National Park are the Bengal tiger,Indian leopardUssuri dhole , sloth bear and the striped hyena . The herbivores are chitalsambar deerbarking deerfour-horned antelope , gaur , wild boar  and Indian elephant. Nagarhole National Park provides an opportunity to see some of the southern population of gaur. Also, this park in Karnataka is a good place to see elephants in the luxuriant forests and bamboo thickets which they most enjoy. Their total population in southern India is now about 6500, nearly all living in the area where Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala adjoin in the shadow of the Western Ghats. 

How to Reach :

By Air : The nearest airports are in Bangalore(236)  and Mysore(96 km)

By RailThe nearest railway station is Mystore which is 80 km away from Nagarhole. Mysore is well connected to Bangalore

By Road : The Bus service is available from nearest place like Mysore (96 km), Madikeri (93 km), Bangalore (236 km).

Image copyright by amoghavarsha.com, thetravellerweare.blogspot.com, journeymart.com, oddroad.com, commons.wikimedia.org

 

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