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Wildlife in Gujarat

WILD GIR

Hiran River is the main lifeline of Western Gir. It originates from Kansa hills of Gir, and flows close to Sasan, Dadhia, Rajasthali, Gidadiya ness and close to Talala village. It meets Sarasvati and Kapila rivers near Prabhas Patan to reach the Arabian Sea. Shingoda River originates from the Chasa hillocks and Kadi Vadli hillocks and crosses Gir near Buntel,

Chhodavadi, Jamwala and Kansaria-No-Ness. It meets the Arabian Sea near Kodinar. The Dataedi river passes close to the Jamwala ness to meet at Jamwal, while the river Raval originates from Dhundhia hills of Gir, goes to Una and near Manekpor, meets the Arabian Sea. Vegetation in Gir can be looked at in four ways. The first is the Teak forest and nearly half of the protected area has this kind of a habitat. The main tree species that occupy this habitat are Khair, Sadad, Timru, Babul, Amla, Moledi, Dhavdo, Kadayo and Bahedo. The non-Teak forests, which comprise the remaining forest consists of tree species like the

Khair, Dhavdo, Sadad, Timru, Amla, Moledi, Kadayo, Salai, Simal, Khakhro, Ber and Asundro.

Grasses mostly include Bhagoru, Ratad, Zinjavo, Saniyar and Kagadiyu. Important 'Lianas' (woody climbers) include Khervelio Baval, and Malvelo.

JESSOR BEAR NATIONAL PARK

Location: Ambaji, Gujarat
Main Animal : Sloth Bear
Other Attracation : Leopards, Sambhar, Nilgai
Best Time To Visit: October To March

Located in the Banaskantha district, 35 kms from Palanpur, and 40 kms from Ambaji, Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary is a safe haven for the sloth bear, one of the most peculiar bear species.

UNIQUE BEAR COMMUNITY
Unlike most other species that tend to be aloof and prefer to live alone, the sloth bear prefers to live in a community. The male of the species plays an important part in raising their offspring a trait not visible amongst the other species.

MARIN NATIONAL PARK

Location: 30 Kms From Jamnagar, Gujarat.
Area : 458 Sq Kms.
Main Attraction : Coral Reef Formations.
Unique Feature: India's First Marine Park.

PIROTAN'S CORAL REEF
Gujarat has the distinction of creating the country's first Marine National Park spread over an area of nearly 458 sq. kms in the Gulf of Kachchh, 30 kms from Jamnagar. Offshore from the southern coast of the gulf of Kachchh, an archipelago of 42 islands sits like little gems in the Arabian Sea. Here, corals

create fantasies in stone and are the master builders of the Park. These are home to some of the finest coral reef formations on India's west coast

Their limestone fortresses - each one the work of a colony of countless tiny animals - come in an amazing variety of shapes and sizes, from the convoluted brain coral to corals that look like horns.

The waters of the gulf are home to the dolphin, the finless porpoise and dugong sea cow. In 1980, the Gulf of Kachchh was declared India's first marine nature reserve, and in 1982 it became India's first marine national park.

MAIN PARK POPULATION
Turtles, shrimp, sponge, eels, sea urchin lurk among the corals and huge schools of fish create a brilliance of colours that are unknown, unseen and unimaginable. Here you can see dolphins and octopuses.

MARINE LIFE
Sea turtles nest on the beaches. The coral reefs are a blaze of colour, home to a variety of rare life forms like the octopus, sea hare and 200 species of molluscs. Also colourful fish like the puffer, butterfly and parrot; and echinoderms like the star fish, brittle star, sand dollar, sea urchin and sea cucumber. More than 40 species of sponges in vivid shades of green, red, pink and other colours abound.

Soft corals include the sea anemone, sea fans and sea pens which resemble a bed of flowers in this brilliant underwater world. Thousands of shore birds like crab plovers, terek sandpipiers, oystercatchers and sanderlings descend on the mud banks to feed on the array of beached marine life when the tide turns. In summer and the monsoons, more than 30 species of birds including herons, darters and terns nest on the island shores and canopies of the mangrove trees.


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