West Bengal, West Bengal Wildlife, West Bengal Tour

Wildlife Sanctuaries in West Bengal

Wildlife Sanctuaries in West Bengal

West Bengal is rich in wild life. About 13.38% of the total area is covered by forests. Altitudinal, physiographic and climatic variations have contributed to different habitat and wildlife in the state. There are 15 wildlife sanctuaries, 5 national parks and 3 tiger reserves in the state of West Bengal. Some of the famous wildlife sanctuaries and national parks are Sunderbans National Park, Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary, Sajnekhali Bird Sanctuary, Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park and Calcutta Zoo.

Sunderbans National Park
Sunderbans National Park, West Bengal

The Sunderbans National Park lies south of Kolkata, where the Ganga with its various tributaries form the largest delta of the world. Piyali, 70 kms from Calcutta via Dosarhat is the gateway to the Sunderbans. Sunderbans means the beautiful forests and derives its name from the words Sundari and ban, which means “the forests of sundari” or mangrove trees. Sunderbans is mainly covered by mangrove forests and vast saline mud flats and covers an area over 2500 square km in the Ganga-Brahmaputra delta and spread across to Bangladesh. The Sunderbans was declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1997. The Sunderbans are the largest estuarine forests in the world. It is a land of 54 tiny islands, crisscrossed by various tributaries of Ganga, that was once infested by Arakanese and Portuguese pirates and is now, the abode of varied flora and fauna. 

This tiger and biosphere reserve still preserves the natural habitat of 200 or more Royal Bengal Tigers. Besides Tiger, Spotted deer, jungle cat, fishing cat, Indian fox, mongoose, spotted deer, wild pig, Indian flying fox, wild boar, small Indian civet, Gangetic dolphin, rhesus monkey, snake, pangolin, sea turtle, cobra, python and crocodiles are the other wildlife which can be seen here. Sunderbans is also the breeding ground of immense variety of birds like Heron, Egret, Cormorant, Fishing Eagle, White Bellied Sea Eagle, Seagul, Tern, Kingfisher, Whimprel, Black-tailed Godwit, Little Stint, Eastern Knot, Curlew, Sandpiper, Golden Plover, Pintail, White-eyed Pochard and Whistling teal. The Sunderbans are accessible only by waterways. Motor launch facilities are available round the year. The ideal time to visit the Sunderbans is during the months of August to March.

Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary

The Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in Alipurduar sub-division of Jalpaiguri district in West Bengal and about 124 km from Siliguri. This wildlife sanctuary is spread over an area of 114 square km. and located close to Phuntsholing in Bhutan. The nine tributaries of the Torsa river flow through the area which is shaded by tall grasses, mighty trees, perennial streams and sandy riverbanks. This sanctuary was established in the year 1941 for the protection of one-horned rhinos. The one–horned rhino, tiger, including the Royal Bengal Tiger, wild elephant, deer, bear, sambar, barking deer, hog 

deer, leopard, wild pig, bison and various other birds can also be seen here. Elephant safaris can be enjoyed at the Sanctuary. The best time to visit the sanctuary is between October and May. The nearest airport is situated at Bagdogra. Jaldapara is connected by road with Darjeeling and Siliguri. The Madarihat is the nearest railway station which is only 7 kms from the Sanctuary.

Sajnekhali Bird Sanctuary

The Sajnekhali Bird sanctuary is a real treat for birdwatchers. This bird sanctuary contains a wide variety of birds like spotted billed pelican, cotton teal, herring gull, Caspian tern, grey heron, large egret, night heron, open-billed stork, white ibis, common kingfisher, brahmini kite and paradise flycatcher. The area is also important for waders, including the Asian dowitcher, a rare winter migrant. The osprey, Pallas’s fish eagle, white-bellied sea eagle, grey-headed fishing eagle, peregrine falcon, Oriental hobby, northern eagle owl and brown fish owl are the other birds.

Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park

Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park is the famous zoological park in Darjeeling. This park is located adjacent to the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute and is a high-altitude wildlife park. This Zoological Park is the home of the Siberian tiger, Himalayan black bear, deer, panda, panther, snow leopard, llama and many colourful birds.

Kolkata Zoo
Kolkata Zoo, West Bengal

The Alipore Zoological Gardens is India's oldest formally stated zoological park and a big tourist attraction in Kolkata, West Bengal.The Kolkata Zoo was established in 1876 in Kolkata, formerly known as Calcutta. The Kolkata Zoo covers an area over 41 acres and is the largest zoo in Asia. This zoo has a wide variety of animals, birds and reptiles including the Royal Bengal Tiger, white tiger and cross-bred lions and tigers. The zoo lake is visited by various migratory birds in winter. There is an exclusive reptile house, aquarium and a children's zoo in the zoo.


States in East India
Bihar || Jharkhand || Orissa || Sikkim || West Bengal

Information about West Bengal
Introduction || History || Geography || Climate || Economy || People || Crafts || Cuisine || Festivals || Tourist Attractions

Cities in West Bengal
Darjeeling || Gaur || Kalimpong || Kolkata || Shantiniketan || Vishnupur

Distances from Cities in West Bengal
Barddhaman || Durgapur || Haldia || Hubli || Kolkata || Siliguri

Festivals of West Bengal
Ganga Sagar Mela || Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Jayanti || Basant Panchami || Birthday of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa || Bengali New Year || Buddha Jayanti || Id || Rabindra Jayanti || Mahesh Yatra || Jhapan || Durga Puja || Christmas || Paush Mela || Vishnupur Festival || Teesta Tea & Tourism Festival

Wildlife Sanctuaries in West Bengal
Sunderbans National Park || Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary || Sajnekhali Bird Sanctuary || Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park || Kolkata Zoo

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