Bhitarkanika: Nature’s Paradise
After fulfilling months of hard work, one definitely wants to take rest away from the din and bustle of city enjoying the beauty of nature in a serene atmosphere.
Bhitarkanika with its lush green mangroves, the fiery crocodiles, migrating birds and turtles, water tracks, the ever beautiful nature surely invites the visitors from all walks of life to spend time leisurely as well as think and explore the beauty of nature. Represented by the 3 protected areas “The Bhitarkanika National Park”, The Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary” and “The Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary”, it is always a place for nature lovers, scholars, scientists and tourists.
Located in Odisha’s Kendrapara district, Bhitarkanika is surrounded with Mangrove Forests criss-crossed with streams and mud planes. In 1975 Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary (BKWS) was established to conserve the rich biodiversity and the pristine beauty in the Brahmani-Baitarani (Dhamra) deltaic region of coastal Odisha. Later the Sanctuary was designated as Bhitarkanika National Park in the year 1988. Yet again in the year 2002 it was re-designated as the Ramsar site or The Wetland of International importance. Even steps are being taken to include it in the World Heritage Site List.
Bhitarkanika river system has few giant saltwater crocodiles. The length of these crocodiles is around 20ft. The nesting behavior of mother Saltwater crocodile is different from other two Indian Crocodilian species. She builds up a small mountain in a secluded place by collecting available nesting material which includes aquatic fern species (Acrostischum aureum), Hental (Phonix paludosa), etc. Then the nesting mother crocodile actively guards her nests for about 70-75 days, till the young crocodiles hatch out for moving into the creeks. The un-disturbed river bank is the favoured basking spot for Saltwater crocodiles. An abode for the highly poisonous snake, King Cobra, Bhitarkanika is one of the few
Bhitarkanika mangrove forests provide an abode for the deadly poisonous snake, King cobra. This is one of the few locales in the country where a good population of King cobras are seen.
With Monsoon water birds flock Bagagahan, a place closer to the famous Sujhajore creek. It is an amazing view to observe 50,000 birds including the new ones chirping and flying.
Then, one needs to steal his view for the rare spotted deer’s who have got adjusted to the climatic prevailing conditions of this ecosystem. With a increase in their population they can be found around the Crocodile Research Centre at Dangmal as well as along the river banks.
The best times to see these spotted deer’s are either in the morning or in during sunset along the river banks. Though few of them can also be seen the FRH at Dangmal during night hours.