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Wildlife and National Parks

Karnataka has always been a top choice for tourist from all over the world and naturally so. This relatively small state in southern India seems to be blessed with many aspects that make it such a top draw for tourists. In the coastal areas of Karnataka, it is Mangalore that commands great attention from visitors each year. Mangalore is one of the largest ports of coastal India and a holiday destination par excellence. For a certain category of people it is the pristine beaches of Mangalore that beckons them, but for another category of travelers it is the prospect of an amazing wildlife holiday that makes it such an awaited event. Although the city properly has little in as far as wildlife is concerned, the locations surrounding Mangalore is rich in natural bio diversity and can be called a true wildlife haven for those that love the beauties of nature.

Mookambika Wildlife Sanctuary

Wildlife Sanctuaries and National Parks in Mangalore

If your holiday were to center around Mangalore, the wildlife and amazing bio-diversity that you come face to face with can leave your speechless with the thrilling experience. A great time for visiting Karnataka is during the months of October and February, you can visit Mangalore all year round and enjoy the splendors of this coastal town. Let’s get you started on a journey through the wildlife splendors of Mangalore as the center. We can begin with Mookambika Wildlife Sanctuary which is located in the Kollur in the Udipi District. There is a common boundary with the Sharavati Wildlife Sanctuary in the northwest. Naturally this visit will enable you to hit two crows with one stone.

The Mookambika Sanctuary is just 125 km from Mangalore is spread over a whopping 114 square kilometers and even has a tourism zone of about 43 where you can revel in the glory of nature and not have to worry about disturbing the tranquil calm of nature and members. You can get a wonderful view of the natural habitat and domain of animals such as the Slender Loris, Lion tailed Macaque, Sambhar, Chital, Sloth Bear, Barking Deer, Otter, Porcupine, Leopold and Even the Tiger. If you’re the kind of holiday person that wants to enjoy your moments of bliss in the lap of nature and spend quality time with the inhabitants, there’s no matter place in India than to be in Mangalore.

Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary

If that sanctuary hasn’t satiated your desires, come visit the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary, that is located around 282 kms from the capital of Karnataka. There is also a magnificent sanctuary over an area of 492 square kilometers. Originally it was a game reserve and later acquired the importance of a sanctuary during 1958. The total area of this sanctuary is deciduous forest that is the home of a marvelous array of plant and animals like that is truly worth exploring. The eco system here supports a huge variety of fauna and that provides the perfect backdrop and habitat for an even larger number of wildlife to thrive in this perfect abode. If you’re wondering what kind of wildlife could you possible find here, well there’s need to hold your breath and read on.

Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary
The lush green beauty of the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary in Mangalore

The Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary is home to various species of deer like the sambhar, the Spotted Deer, the Barking and Chital Deer. You can see Slender Loris, Gaurs, Macaques, the famed Malabar Giant Squirrel and even the majestic Elephants. There is also a huge population of carnivores here like the tiger, the Leopold, wild dogs, Jackals, Wild Boars etc. Besides there are a number of smaller inhabitants such as the mongoose, the otter, Leopold cat’s too.

The Bhadra region also carries the pride of being converted into a Tiger Reserve in 1998 and holds a pride of place in the country’s importance as the tiger habitat. However one thing must be mentioned for those who want to tour Mangalore, the ornithologicaly inclined can see a treasure trove in the various wildlife sanctuaries around this place.

With over 250 species of birds here, this is also a bird lover’s paradise. Here is a huge number of Pigeons, Bush Quails, Parrots, Partridges, Mains Woodpeckers Doves, Parakeets and More. Also if you love to see the reptilian slithers, there’s a lot for you in store as well. This sanctuary abounds in Crocodiles, Vipers, Rat Snakes, Pythons and more.

Not just that, it is often observed that those that love wildlife are the kind that enjoys the excitement of various adventure sports, and in this filed you can look forward to excellent facilities here. The forest department organizes a large range of activities for the adventure lovers that come here. These could be rock climbing, camping, trekking, boating etc and in the midst of such natural settings the activities become even more exhilarating.

Nagarahole National Park

Another top spot to visit would be the Nagarahole National Park. This also a magnificent park spread over an area of 643 square kilometers and is named after the Nagar Hole River, which in a snake like fashion moves through the well known park. The name is officially known as the Rajiv Gandhi National Park. Similar to other parks in the area, is home to a very rich combination of bio-diversity and wildlife.

You can come face to face with a Striped Hyena, Asian elephants, The Mouse Deer, Black Nape hare, jackals etc. for the slither lover there is a rich population of Indian rock Python, Russell’s viper, Vine Snakes and other such reptiles. There is also a huge avian population such as the Nilgiri Wood Pigeon Lesser Adjutant, and the the special surprise could well be the endangered Oriental White Backed Vulture and the total avian population is in the region of 270 species.

Nagarahole National Park
An Asian elephant cooling itself at Nagarahole National Park

Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary

The Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the Coorg district and is bordering the district of Kerala. The name for this sanctuary is derived from the highest peak which rises to a height of 1607m in height and covers an approximate area of about 181 kms. The park is primarily evergreen forest area and supports a massive range of flora and fauna along with a large wildlife population. Apart from the general wildlife visible in major parts of southern India, here one can see a host of Bonnet macaque, Barking Deer, Malabar giant Squirrel, Wild Pig, Nilgiri marten, Civets, Pangolin, Giant Flying Squirrel and others. There is also a huge reptile population within the ambit of this sanctuary as well as a high percentage of avian members.

Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary
A cub and a mother leopard taking rest in the shady regions of Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary

Another absolutely great place to visit is the Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary also located in the Kodagu district in Southern Karnataka. This sanctuary is spread over an area of approximately 100 square kilometers. What makes this exciting is that it is located between two similar forests; on the north are Bisele and the Kukke Subramnya Forest range to the west. There is a large number of waterfalls and the innumerable mountain streams that fills the sanctuary. The highest peak is Pushpagiri, within the ambit of this place. The rich diversify of nature is visible here through the wildlife and the plant and forest diversity prevalent here. Besides the usual population, one can see the giant flying squirrel, the striped neck mongoose, the Indian hare the mouse deer, and more.

When it comes to members of the primates it is recorded to be the home of three distinct species which are the Common Langur, The Bonnet Macaque and the lion Tailed Macaque. This is also one of the important avian spots in the map of southern India. There is a great population of fine avian specimens such as the Blue Winged Parakeet the White Bellied Blue Fly catcher, The Malabar grey Hornbill, The grey Headed Bulbul and more. We won’t forget to mention that here to like the other sanctuaries there is a very healthy reptile population that brings with the beauty of the Common Cobra, The Indian rock Python, The Olive Keel back, the Bamboo pit Viper etc.

Now, with what you’ve just read it is not hard to imagine the beauty that surrounds the city of Mangalore and the wealth of nature it is nestled in. If you’re the kind of person that loves to see the splendors of nature and specially the wild inhabitants, make your way to Mangalore and you will surely see the wild side of life, in this part of southern India.

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