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Vinod Goel
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During the 3rd Asian Ministerial Conference for tiger conservation held at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi from 12th to 14th April 2016, I was introduced by my friend Shri Sanjay Pathak, (I F S from National tiger Conservation Authority) under the Ministry of Forest, Environment and Climate Change to Shri D P Bakwal working at Guwahati, the Capital of State of Assam. After seeing the photo exhibition held by my team, for the delegates attending the conference at India Habitat Centre, Lodhi road New Delhi in the evening; Shri D P Bakwal invited me to visit any of the tiger parks in the north eastern states of India. I could not resist the offer. I thought why not to visit the Orang Tiger Reserve in Assam, the 49th tiger reserve declared in March 2016.


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On 15th May I landed up in Guwahati for a personal work by a flight in the afternoon. On 16th morning I proceeded for Orang tiger Reserve after knowing the route to be followed. From Guwahati it was Mangaldoi, Dalgaon, Kopati, Silbari and finally the gate of the Orang tiger reserve. It is about 110 km from Guwahati although information from the internet indicates 140 KMs. Officially the park gets closed for the visitors from 1st May on account of rains. The deputed forest guard was waiting for us. No doubt it was raining but the jungle was fresh as the rains during a period of almost a month had given a new look to the fauna and flora.


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As we ventured into the forest, we came across a monitor lizard and fishes gliding on the wet surface. This park is known for one horn rhinoceros, tigers, hog deers, wild buffalo’s and various small cats. From the gate to the Satsimula Inspection bungalow, about 5 km we could not observe any rhinoceros. As it was raining we thought of spending sometime at the inspection bungalow as we were hungry. Further as we could see the grassland from the bungalow the chances of seeing the rhinoceros grazing were bright. The idea worked and we were fortunate to see two rhinos from there. The landscape from the bungalow was amazing and we over stayed and left the place after the rain stopped.


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By now the weather had become clear and there was sun shine which forced the animals to come out in the open to dry their skin. The first to be seen was hog deer. I was told by my guide that this park has plenty of hog deers and the population density is about 50 -60 per square kilometers. We could see then on and off on our route as well as in the thick jungle. It was pleasure to see a lone male on the main route as well as hardly 30 feet from us. It gave us beautiful and life remembering shots. A family of three on the route was the shot of the day.


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A wild boar in the midst of the under growth showed its presence, It really posed for us. This park is known foe seven different types of tortoise and turtles. I saw one of them for the first time in my life. Without knowing the name I shot it. Later on from the internet I found it to be Tricarinate turtle (Melanocheys tricarinate). It too gave us good shots.A greater crow pheasant was exhibiting various poses as if to please his girl friend in the bushes. I liked the way it was trying to woo the female.


This park has 24 tigers in the park area of about 78 Sq. Km, as per 2014 report from the Wildlife Institute of India. One of the casual labor working at the Satsimolu inspection bungalow told that he saw a tiger on the route towards the bungalow. This too confirmed the presence of tiger. We even tried at the grassland where generally the tiger crosses the main route. But we were not lucky enough to see it. May be next time.


This park is famous for natural scenic beauty and attracts tourists from different parts of the world. It is also known as Mini Kaziranga as the topography as well as natural habitat is very similar .Apart from rhinoceros one can generally see hog deers at ease. During the main season from October to April, the regular sightings of royal Bengal tigers are reported.


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@@Vinod Goel thank you for sharing this new park. that is a marvellous specimen of a hog deer stag.

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@@Vinod Goel

Thank you for posting this - it does look beautiful in the rain - so green. I very much enjoy your posts about lesser known Indian parks.

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@@Vinod Goel As @@TonyQ says, thanks for bringing these lesser known parks to our attention.

 

Very interesting. It does look very green and wet! Perhaps the big cats were avoiding the rain.

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Very interesting, thanks for sharing.

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Some wonderfully lush and green pictures, and like the others I really appreciate learning about these lower-profile Indian parks - thank you!

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@@Kitsafari

Thanks for going through the contents. i specially enjoyed the presence of heavy density of hog deers in the park,which looks great during rains.

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@@TonyQ

Thanks for your time.No doubt parks in India looks fantastic during rains. I have therefore made a point to visit some of

them before they closes for the tourist by 16th June or 1st of July in the North or Central India.

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@@wilddog

Thanks for appreciating the efforts to bring lesser known parks of the country to the outside world.I think this is my motive and target.This is the latest Tiger Reserve added to the list. In the time to come tourist would be delighted to see tiger in this park closest to Guwahati.As i was hardly for a few hours,i was intrested in enjoying the topography, which people say resembles to that of Kaziranga National park.

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@@twaffle

I think my purpose of bringing lesser known parks is getting due attention.Lot many thanks.

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@@michael-ibk

I have made a point to visit the park during rains whenever possible. The rains gives a new life to the fauna and flora in the forest and ultimately to the photography.

Thanks for appreciating the clicks.

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