RANTHAMBORE NATIONAL PARK
Lat:26o01´13´´N/76o20´39´´E 113,400ha (Ranthambore Keladevi and Mansingh sanctuaries; 39,200ha public access) hilly m Northern tropical dry deciduous forests
Ranthambore Keladevi and Mansingh sanctuaries
November to April (open from October to June)
For a map see foot
Birding Site Guide
Ranthambore is located in central India between the Aravalli and Vindhya mountains, to reach Ranthambore there are regular flights to Jaipur (145km away). There is a railway station 13km SSW at the nearest town Sawai Madhopur. The last stage of the journey is by road. Ranthambore Park is a mosaic of rugged hills and ridges with 6 manmade various sized lakes in the valleys and the area is cloaked in deciduous forests. It is scattered with the ruins including the fort and palaces.
Accommodation facilities range in price from cheap to luxurious, inside the park there is Jhoomer Baori forests lodge and the Maharaja Lodge and the hotels are Jogi Mahal and Hotel Kamadhenu. Other accommodation is also available.
The park is toured by a jeep or a lorry. The reservation of these can be done at the Project Tiger Office at Sawai Madhopur. The tour is accompanied by a guide. In the park, one must stick to the allocated route. Entry is relatively expensive, with fees for entrance, vehicle hired, guide and camera being charged separately.
A total of between 250 and 300 species of birds have been recorded (depending on source).
Tigers Panthera tigris tigris are obviously the main target (36 present), with some of the best places to see them being around the main lake. Other predators include Leopard Panthera pardus (at least 40) and Jungle Cat Felis chaus, Asiatic Jackal (Indian or Golden) Canis aureus and there is also the nearly as dangerous and bad tempered Sloth Bear Melursus ursinus. There are also plenty of prey species including Nilgai Boselaphus tragocamelus, Spotted Deer (Chital) Cervus axis, Sambar Cervus Unicolor, Wild Boar Sus scrofa, Chinkara (Indian Gazelle) Gazella bennetti, Common Langurs Presbytis entellus, Rhesus Macaques Macaca mullata, Indian Crested Porcupine Hystrix indica, Indian Hare Lepus nigricollis, Common Mongoose Herpestes edwardsi, Small Indian Mongoose Herpestes auropunctatus and reptiles; Marsh Crocodile (Mugger or Broad-snouted) Crocodylus palustris and Yellow Monitor Lizard Varanus flavescens.
For a full checklist of mammals found at Ranthambore and map try Nature Safari India
The commonest tree is the Dhok or Anogeissus pendula whose leaves are favoured by browsing animals. Other trees are the holy Banyan (Ficus bengalensis), The Flame of the Forest Butea monosperma and Butea frondosa, the medicinal Neem tree Azadirachta indiaca. Edible fruit trees include the Mango Magnifera indica, Jamun Syzygium cumini, Ber Zizyphus mauritania and Tamarind Tamarindicus indica. Other trees include Acacias: Ronj Acacia leucophloea, Khair Acacia catechu, Kikar Acacia nilotica, khimi Manilkara hexandra, Kadam Authocephalus cadamba, salar Boswellia serrata, tendu Diospyrous melanoxylon, Kulu Sterculia urens, gurjan Lannea coromandelica, Gum Sterculia urens, Khajur Phoenix sylvestris, Mohua Madhuca indica, Karel Capparis decidua, Kakera Flacourtia indica and Khejda Prosopis specigera.
India Wildlife Tours very good information on Indian national parks.
Nature Safari India, this is the best website for all information.
Taj Mahal India Travel