Undoubtedly, Gir earns most of its fame due to the presence of the Asiatic Lions. You won’t see lions anywhere else in the world except Africa and India’s Gir National Park in Junagadh, Gujarat.
Other than the lions, Gir National Park houses several other creatures, including a few endangered species. The fauna of Gir is also equally diverse and varied. People travel to Gir from different parts of the world to see the majestic animals prowling in their natural habitat. Wildlife enthusiasts and thrill seekers pine for the safari tours where they ride in a vehicle and chase after lions. Here you will find out about everything that adds to the popularity of Gir National Park.
You can go to any wildlife reserve in the world, but you won’t find Asiatic Lions there. Incessant poaching and pleasure hunting led to complete obliteration of these animals. In 1913, the number of these creatures living in the wild dropped down to twenty. Once the Gir National Park came into existence, the number rose to five hundred and twenty-three. Today, the king of the jungle resides comfortably within the protected borders of this park. It covers a total area of fourteen hundred and twelve square kilometers. However, the core area of the park encompasses two hundred and fifty-eight square kilometers.
The Nawab of Junagadh was known as Mohammed Rasul Khan-Ji. The man, like all other royal people, enjoyed hunting. Indiscriminate killing of the Asiatic Lions took place all over the continent of Asia. The case was the same in India, as the Nawab did the same thing. However, the man was also humane enough to realize the importance of these animals. That is why the Nawab initiated a preservation and protection program. The private hunting grounds of the Nawab became a haven for these creatures. Once the ruled passed away, the killing of these animals began once more. Finally, the government of India intervened in 1965 and laid the foundation of the Gir National Park.
If you believe that the Gir National Park is only about the lions, then you are wrong. There is much more to witness at this place than you can imagine. Dry deciduous forests cover the entire region of the park, making it the best habitat for lions to live, grow, and thrive. According to a census conducted four years ago, there are about five hundred and twenty-three lions and over three hundred leopards living here. Other than that, two species of deer also have their home in these forests. One is the Sambar, which holds the record of being the largest of its kind in India. Another herbivore is the Chowsingha, which is the only four-horned antelope in the world. If you’re lucky, then you will spot jackals, Indian foxes, and striped hyenas as well.
Birds And Reptiles
Yes, multiple species of avian creatures and reptiles exist within the boundaries of Gir National Park. More than two hundred varieties of birds live here. Naturally, Gir National Park became an important bird conservation area for the Indian Bird Conservation Network. Some endangered bird species living here include the Long-billed and white-backed vulture. Sasan Gir is where more than forty species of reptiles live. There is a massive reservoir inside the park which is known as Kamleshwar. If you go there, then you will witness the prowess of the marsh crocodiles. Other reptiles surviving in Gir National Park are Russell’s viper, krait, saw-scaled viper, and King Cobra. Browse through our wide range of Gir Jeep Safari Packages with accommodation. Best pricing available for Gir Hotels & Resorts.
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