Rajasthan is a haven for a wide spectrum of wildlife. The topography of Rajasthan ranges from the barren desert, scrub-thorn aid forests, rocks and ravines to wetlands and lush, green forests. And each of these areas houses a large variety of animals and bird life. Some of them rare while some endangered.
Ranthambhore, in the state of Rajasthan, is one of the smallest Project Tiger reserves. It's name comes from the vast fort that stands in the middle of the forest. The name Ranthambore is derived from two hills in the area, Ran and Thanbhor. Another version says that Ranthambhore was once called Rana Stambhapura or City of the Pillars of War!
This park is situated only 200 km from Delhi and 107 kms from Jaipur. Although larger than Ranthambor, it is less commercialised and has less tigers but a similar topography. It covers an area of 800 sq km in total, with a core area of approximately 500 sq km.
A fairly new sanctuary, it was established in 1983 and covers a total area of 229 sq km of scrub and dry deciduous forest. Leopards, chinkara, sloth bear can be spotted here if one is lucky. The best time to plan you safari in Bhensrod Garh Sanctuary is between October and May.
An erstwhile royal hunting preserve of the Maharaja of Kota, it is a thickly forested sanctuary lying along the southeastern border of Kota. This hilly sanctuary with thick forests is worth a visit. The animals here include Wolf, Sloth Bear, Chinkara and Leopard. This sanctuary is stretched in the area of 250 sq Kms, almost 50 Kms from Kota. The best time to visit is between February and May.
Desert National Sanctuary
The Desert National Park is an excellent example of the ecosystem of the Thar Desert and its rich fauna. The Sudashri forest post is the most ideal place for observing wildlife in the Desert National Park. Sand dunes form less than 20 percent of the Park, which consists of craggy rocks, pavements and compact salt lake bottoms, intermedial areas and fixed dunes. Its inhabitants include the blackbuck, chinkara, wolf, Indian fox, desert fox, hare and desert cat. Flights of sandfrouse start coming to waterholes from sunrise onwards. One also hear the morning call of the grey partridge. Blue tailed and green bee-eaters, drongos, common and bush quail and Indian rollers are birds, which are commonly found around waterholes. the park is also home to the great Indian Bustard which is peril of extinction..
Established in 1957,this sanctuary is located beside the man-made lake of the same name. Covering a total area of 160 sq km, it harbours sloth bear, leopard, chital, chinkara, wild boar and a number of birds. Some crocodiles and fish can also be spotted here. Best time to visit is between November and January.
Keoladeo National Park
This magnificent bird haven in actual came into being paradoxically as a duck shooting preserve for Maharaja Suraj Mull of Bharatpur. He transformed the shallow depression formed by the confluence of River Gambhir and River Banganga into a reservoir by damming the rainwater in monsoons. Flooding of water created shallow wetland ecosystem causing it to be a perfect habitat for an astounding variety of birds. The park that was a hunting preserve for the Maharaja and the British continued to be so till 1964, after which the hunting was banned.
Is located in the most rugged of the Aravali in Pali, Rajsamand and Udaipur districts of Rajasthan. It takes name after the impressive historic fort of Kumbhalgarh, which come into view over the Park. It is 578 sq Kms in area and at an altitude of 500 to 1,300m. It is home to a very large variety of wild life, some of which are highly endangered species. The wild life includes wolf, leopards, sloth bear, hyena, jackal, jungle cat, smabhar, nilgai, chaisingh (the four horned antelope), chinkara and hare.
Mount Abu Sanctuary
The sanctuary comprises the oldest mountain ranges - The Aravali. It was declared as a Wildlife Sanctuary in 1960. Apart from having several sightseeing places this sanctuary is a draw for nature lovers as it has great potential for Eco-tourism, In shape this sanctuary is long and narrow but the top spreads out into a picturesque plateau which is about 19 km. is length and 5-8 km. in breadth. Attitudinally it varies from 300m. at the foot Mil to 1722m. at Gurashikhar, the highest peak of the Aravali Ranges. The rocks are igneous and due the weathering effect of wind and water, large cavities are common the rocks. This feature is typical of Aravali and particularly of Mt. Abu. Toad Rock in Mount Abu is one such example.