Bandhavgarh – The Echo-equalizer

The English poet John Donne has said that no man is an island entirely of himself, that everybody is a part of the main. It has been said that in the ecosystem, all species of life, plant and animal, are interlinked with one another. Interference with any species will have long standing repercussions on others.

There are various natural food chains that contribute in balancing the ecosystem. Tiger stands at the echelon of the food chain, but is the most threatened by human beings. Therefore, National parks and tiger reserves are developed by government for preservation of wildlife. Bandhavgarh National Park lies in the Umaria district of Madhya Pradesh, in the Vindhya and Satpura hill range.

Bandhavgarh Landscape
Bandhavgarh is a part of the Deccan Peninsula classified as Central Highlands. Bandhavgarh National Park sprawls over an area of 448 square km. At the center of the park is the Bandhavgarh hill rising 811 meters above the sea level. Valleys with steep gradient surround the hill. It is sided with great cliffs and eroded rocks. The 2000 years old Bandhavgarh Fort stands on the highest point of the hill. Rivers Rohilla and Son flow on the eastern side and the river Umrar on the western side. Thus, the land is fertile for natural vegetation.

Bandhavgarh Legend & History
Bandhava means ‘brother’ and ‘garh’ means fort. The name Bandhavgarh is derived from an epic story of Lord Rama and his brother Laksmana. The surrounding dense forest was once the hunting ground for the Maharaja of Rewa who was said to have killed 109 tigers from this forest during his rule.

Bandhavgarh Flora
The tall saal trees are the chief constituent of the flora and bamboos grow deeply on the lower slopes of the Bandhavgarh hill.

Bandhavgarh Fauna
Asian Tigers are the chief attractions of Bandhavgarh National Park. Population density of tigers is the highest in this park, compared to other National Parks of India and therefore is the chief attraction of ‘tiger lovers’. It stands at 60 tiger per 450 square meters. Royal Bengal Tigers are the proud of Bandhavgarh National Park. It was once the breeding place of ‘White Tiger’.

More than 22 species of mammals and 250 species of birds adorn the Bandhavgarh National Park. Visitors can infrequently sight leopards and sloth bear. However, animal lovers can satiate their visual needs by viewing other species of wildlife such as red-faced monkeys, nilgai, chinkara, Indian bison, wild boars, Bengal fox, langur, chusingha and elephants.

The reptilian fauna includes cobra, viper, ratsnake, python, and turtle and lizards like varanus.

Tourists having interest in bird watching will be greatly amazed to find great varieties of birds in the Bandhavgarh National Park. The ‘Changeable Hawk Eagle’ draws attention for its odd name. Other are, crested serpent eagle, lesser teal, grabe, white-eyed buzzard, Egyptian vulture, red jungle fowl, parakeet, peacock and king-fisher.

Bandhavgarh Safari
For watching animals in their natural postures, tourists can avail Jeep Safaris or Elephant Safaris.

Bandhavgarh Climate
Bandhavgarh has an extreme climate. The park is closed during July to October due to rain and can be visited during February to June.

A visit to Bandhavgarh National Park reveals the extent to which it has contributed for the scientific, economic, aesthetic, cultural and ecological purpose of the country.