The second largest mangrove forest in the world, the ‘Pichavaram Mangrove Forest’ is situated near Chidambaram in South India. The Bhitarkanika mangroves comprise of a wide variety of habitats ranging from the tidal rivers and creek to riverine islands, coastal wetlands and inter tidal zones. But the major attraction remains the wildlife wealth. The national park and wildlife sanctuary is inundated by the rivers Brahmani, Baitarani, Dhamra, Pathsala. This is India’s second-largest mangrove region, and most of the 672-sq-km delta that forms this wonderful sanctuary is a significant biodiversity hot spot. But the major attraction remains the wildlife wealth. These species are endemic to the area and are called mangroves. Bhitarkanika is one such location of rich, lush green vibrant eco-system lying in the estuarine region of Brahmani- Baitarani in the North-Eastern corner of Kendrapara district of Odisha. Mangroves are salt tolerant, complex and dynamic eco-systems that occur in tropical and subtropical inter-tidal regions. It’s only been a few minutes inside Bhitarkanika’s 145 sq km core area and we come upon the mangroves. Mangroves and wildlife. Gahirmatha Beach and Marine Sanctuary are to the east, separating swamp region and mangroves from the Bay of Bengal. [11], Avifauna includes 320 species including eight kingfisher species. Education played a large role in the willingness to conserve mangroves: “Respondents with a higher education level were more aware of the conservation status of the Bhitarkanika mangrove forests and had a positive attitude towards conservation issues as found in other areas (e.g. The area is intersected by a network of creeks with Bay of Bengal on the East. These observations and estimations have been made by park officials over the course of ten years, from 2006 to 2016, however, regardless of the skill of the observers it cannot be compared to a verified tape measurement, especially considering the uncertainty inherent in visual size estimation in the wild. They play a very significant role in protecting the hinterland against (i) cyclones and (ii) the ingress of sea water [3], In 2006, Guinness World Records accepted claims of a 7.1 m (23 ft 4 in), 2,000 kg (4,400 lb) male saltwater crocodile living within Bhitarkanika National Park. The Bhitarkanika Mangroves were zamindari forests until 1952, when the government of Odisha abolished the zamindari system, and put the zamindari forests in the control of the state forest department. Gupti Nature Camp, inside the forests of Bhitarkanika and on the banks of river Patasala has 6 luxury accommodations for night stay. Among these, 54 species of polychaetes, 10 species of crustaceans and 7 species each of bivalves and gastropods and 3 species of ‘others’ were recorded. The best time to travel through this creek is early morning or before sunset. There are disturbing reports about mangroves in Bhitarkanika, one of their best known habitats, being cleared to facilitate illegal prawn culture and construction activities. Mangroves are present on the estuary form by the river Devi in Jagatsinghpur district. It is the Entry Point to Bhitarkanika Sanctuary. Mangrove Pitta build nests on high branches of mangrove trees like Heritiera fomes as well as at low height close to the ground in bushy Phoenix paludosa . Kendrapara: A total of 103 nesting sites of estuarine crocodiles have been spotted this year in Odisha’s Bhitarkanika National Park, an official said. The Bhitarkanika Mangroves are home to 55 of India's 58 known mangrove species. [8][9] In future, if conservation efforts pay off, these large individuals could be more common. [6] A significant figure, since individuals over 5 m (16 ft 5 in) are considered rare,[7] making the Bhitarkanika Park a suitable habitat for large individuals. Mangroves : A variety of plants are seen putting up luxuriant growth in this inter tidal habitat. Mangroves are salt tolerant, complex and dynamic eco-systems that occur in tropical and subtropical inter-tidal regions. The Bhitarkanika National Park Spread over an area of 672 square kilometers, the National Park consists of the Brahmani, Baitrani Delta, backwaters, estuaries, and creeks. Now Kingfishers are some of the most common birds you find in India. These wetlands are the homes of largest population of salt water crocodiles and Mangroves in India. Bhitarkanika offers decent staying option and one can explore the creeks with boats looking for beautiful birds and massive salt water crocs. All Nature Camps have their own catering and serve food which is include in the package. Cerbera manghas is found only in Bhitarkanika and Dangmal forest blocks with a density of 43/ha in Bhitarkanika and 17/ha in Dangmal block. Nearly 1671 saltwater crocodiles inhabit the rivers and creeks. It was one of the reasons to visit this national park. Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary was declared vide notification No.6958/FF AH on 22 April 1975 over an area of 672 km². The low lying mangrove forests of Bhitarkanika is subjected to regular tidal inundation twice daily. Monitor lizards are amazing reptiles which can be seen in close quarters. The census breakup of other mammals is monkeys - 1,522, jackals - 305, common langur - 39, otter - 38, sambar deer - 17, jungle cat - 11, fox - 10, Mongoose - 7, wolf- 7, fishing cats - 3, hyena - 12, according to the survey data. In Baleswar district the mangroves are found on the estuary formed on the mouth region of the Subarnarekha river and known as Bichitrapur mangroves. Coming to Bhitarkanika mangroves, 81 species of macrofauna were found. The mangrove belt in Odisha includes the major portion of Bhitarkanika … Havelock island is rich in mangroves just like the rest of the Andaman archipelago. It used to be the hunting grounds of the erstwhile King of Kanika . Bhitarkanika Mangroves is India’s second largest forest,located in … Spotted deers and wild boars are abundant in the park and can be spotted at all the major locations. Khola is one of the gateways into the park. Most of the birds are Asian open bill, egrets, black ibis, cormorants, and darters. Mangroves in Odisha are the tolerant salt plant species found in the inter-tidal regions along with the creeks and estuaries. The alley between the meandering creeks and rivers, houses the second largest viable mangrove eco-system of India. The Bhitarkanika Mangroves are home to 55 of India’s 58 known mangrove species. [citation needed], The park is home to the saltwater crocodile, Indian python, black ibis, wild boar, rhesus monkey, chital, darter, cobra, monitor lizard. Main article: Bhitarkanika Mangroves. Sixteen sites of Bhitarkanika mangrove areas were surveyed for the collection of roots and soil samples. Eight varieties of Kingfishers are found here and can be spotted along the many creeks and riverines within the park. The national park is home to Saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), Indian python, king cobra, black ibis, darters and many other species of flora and fauna.[1]. More than ninety variety of mangroves and its associates are found here. Bhitarkanika has a wide network of tidal rivers and creeks. Seedlings of mangrove species were tested for AM colonization through root clearing and staining technique. Bhitarkanika Mangroves, Odisha. The area is also been designated as second Ramsar site of the State after the Chilika Lake. The bird is found to be breeding in the months of May to August in Bhitarkanika National Park. In 1975, an area of 672 km2 was declared the Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary. Bhitarkanika has a very rich historical and cultural past. 2005). Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary and National Park is known as the “Mini-Amazon” of India. An average of 240,000 nests per season was estimated between 1976 and 1996. Like many mangrove areas, the dense coastal forests provide vital protection for millions of people from devastating cyclones and tidal surges - of India's 58 recorded species of mangroves, 55 species are found in Bhitarkanika, a wider mangrove diversity than in the Sundarbans! Some species occurring outside the inter tidal environment are called associates of mangroves. In Bhitarkanika the bird is seen perching on Mangrove trees as well as foraging on mangrove ground. The Sanctuary comprising mangrove forests meandering rivers, innumerable criss-crossed tidal inundated creeks provide last refuge to the already endangered salt water crocodile (Crocodilus porosus). [5] According to the park report in 2006, there were 203 adults, of which 16 measured over 4.9 m (16 ft 1 in); 5 of these 5.5 to 6.1 m (18 ft 1 in to 20 ft 0 in), and 3 over 6.1 m (20 ft 0 in), as well as the preserved skeleton of a 6.0 m (19 ft 8 in) specimen which died one year earlier. [2] 3 of these varieties we saw for the first time. [3], About 62 mangrove species occur in the Bhitarkanika Mangroves, including Avicenna, Bruguiera, Heritiera and Rhizophora. A heronry encloses about 4 ha (9.9 acres), where 11,287 nests were counted in 2006. The boat ride from Khola to Dangmal or vice versa is highly recommended. Bhitarkanika National Park is a 145 km2 (56 sq mi) large national park in northeast Kendrapara district in Odisha in eastern India. The mangroves dock the saltwater crocodiles and Gahirmatha Beach, which separates the mangroves from the Bengal. It is located in Kendrapara district of Odisha, India on the deltas of Brahmani and Baitarani rivers, and is spread over 672 square kilometres of area. The sanctuary is rich in avifauna, mammalian and reptilians and provide habitat for king cobra, Indian python and Asian water monitor. Between August 2004 and December 2006, 263 bird species were recorded, encompassing 147 resident and 99 migrant species. As many as 62 species of mangrove & its associates are found in Bhitarkanika Sanctuary. Up to 80,000 individuals were captured every year until 1982. Main article: Bhitarkanika Mangroves Mangroves are salt tolerant, complex and dynamic eco-systems that occur in tropical and subtropical inter-tidal regions. Bagagahana walk is great to look for wildlife. It has much significance with regard to ecological, geomorphological and biological background which includes mangrove forests, rivers, creeks, estuaries, back water, accreted land and mud flats. INTRODUCTION The mangrove forest in Bhitarkanika of Orissa coast is rich in biological diversity and it is a globally significant habitat for wildlife (1). The mangroves harbor one of India's largest populations of saltwater crocodiles, and Gahirmatha Beach, which separates the mangroves from the Bay of Bengal, is the world's most … It was designated on 16 September 1998 and obtained the status of a Ramsar site on 19 August 2002. Bhitarkanika Mangroves is a mangrove wetland in Odisha, India, covering an area of 650 km (400 mi) in the Brahmani and Baitarani river deltas. The mangroves found along the Odisha coast have signifcant conservation value due to their rich and unique biodiversity. It is also the home of medieval Hindu temples which can be found dotted throughout the sanctuary. The most recently published official park report shows an increase of adult crocodiles to 308 individuals, as well as a steady increase over the years. At Bhitarkanika, we got to see 6 different types of Kingfisher birds in its dense mangroves dotting the creeks. The Bhitarkanika National Park in Odisha’s Kendrapara district, which was closed due to the COVID-19 situation, will reopen for tourists from October 1. There are 82 species of mangroves in India, including rare ones such as Aglaia cucullat a . [4] Due to the difficulty of trapping and measuring a large living crocodile, the accuracy of these dimensions is yet to be verified. This is along an artificial creek and it passes through dense mangrove forest providing a glimpse into the estuarine ecosystem and its wealth of fauna. Mangroves of Bhitarkanika (20° 4` 20° 8`N, 86° 45`E), Orissa occupy a … Three rivers flow out to sea at Bhitarkanika, forming a tidal maze of muddy creeks and mangroves. The mangroves of Bhitarkanika National Park, in the Kendrapara district of Orissa, India (located at approximately 20°40'N, 87°00'E) make up about 700 of the 2500 sq. Bhubaneswar: Odisha’s mangrove forests are facing a threat like most of its other natural resources. As per the latest census of the reptiles, the number of saltwater crocodiles, the species which are not found in any other river system in the state, stood at 1,757 in Bhitarkanika, he said. Many water birds visit Bagagahan heronry, which is an area of approximately 4 ha within the Bhitarkanika Forest Block near Suajore creek from the month of June to October. When the tide was high, I would snorkel around these ‘octopus plants’ and peer through the lattice work at the life among them. Around 3,000 saltwater crocodiles were born during 2014 annual breeding and nesting season. It hosts many mangrove species, and is the second largest mangrove ecosystem in India. Chen et al. Birds such as Asian open bill, cormorants, darters, black ibis, egrets, are frequently seen in the park. It is a very good place to sight the giant Salt Water Crocodile, some growing to 23 feet in length, along with other reptiles like the Water Monitor Lizard and the King Cobra. Great varieties of mangrove plants are found here which provide home to a variety of rare and endangered species. It is surrounded by Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary, which spread over 672 km2 (259 sq mi). Bhitarkanika Mangroves is a mangrove wetland in Odisha, covering an area of 650 km (400 mi) in the Brahmani and Baitarani river deltas. An area of 145 km² has been notified as Bhitarkanika National Park vide Notification No.19686/F in September 1998 by the government of Odisha. The hunting towers and artificial watering holes can be seen at many places including Bhitarkanika trail and at Dangmal. The long green seeds of these plants floated away into the clear blue of open ocean. Its 672 km² of mangrove forest and wetland provides home to well over 215 species of birds including winter migrants from central-Asia and Europe. Some of the other significant Mangrove forests found in India include the ‘Bhitarkanika Mangroves’ and ‘Godavari-Krishna Mangroves’. Reptiles present in the mangroves include saltwater crocodile, king cobra, Indian python and water monitor. Bhitarkanika Mangroves were designated a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance in 2002. Mangrove species, casuarinas, and grasses like the indigo bush. Giant salt water crocodiles and a variety of other wildlife inhabit this eco-system which is one of Asia's most spectacular wildlife sanctuaries. Every year close to 120,000 winter visitors from abroad for wintering and 80,000 resident birds from different parts of India arrive for nesting during the monsoon season.[12]. We have seen them everywhere. Bhitarkanika National park is famous for Salt water crocodiles, White Crocodiles and Mangroves. This is world’s most important nesting beach for Olive Ridley sea turtles. E. agallocha is a dominant species at all sites. Since 1983, collecting and marketing turtles and their eggs is banned. [10], As per the 2014 survey of mammals, first of its kind to be undertaken in the forest and wetland sites of the park; 1,872 spotted deers, 1,213 numbers of wild boars have made the forest areas their home. Keywords: Streptomyces, mangroves, Bhitarkanika. Bhitarkanika National Park is the core area of Bhitarkanika Sanctuary. It is also the home of medieval Hindu temples which can be found dotted throughout the sanctuary. [5], A mangrove wetland in India's Odisha state, Ramsar Wetland of International Importance, "Avifauna of Bhitarkanika mangroves, India", "Incidental catch of sea turtles in India", Mangroves of Orissa (Orissa State Forest Department: Wildlife Organisation), Bhitarkanika Trip report - Wildlife Times, Point Calimere Wildlife and Bird Sanctuary, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bhitarkanika_Mangroves&oldid=986220460, Short description is different from Wikidata, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 30 October 2020, at 14:43. A study was carried out to assess the species diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi in different salinity zones of Bhitarkanika mangroves of Orissa, India. The mangroves of Bhitarkanika National Park, in the Kendrapara district of Orissa, India (located at approximately 20°40'N, 87°00'E) make up about 700 of the 2500 sq. Fauna species found in Bhitarkanika include: Salt water crocodiles, Olive Ridley Turtles, Kingfishers, bird varieties, python, monitor lizards, wild boar, hyenas, spotted deer, wild cat, jungle fowl. Olive ridley turtles nest on Gahirmatha and other nearby beaches. Flora is in the form of mangrove species. The Gahirmatha Marine Wildlife Sanctuary, which bounds the Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary to the east, was created in September 1997, and encompasses Gahirmatha Beach and an adjacent portion of the Bay of Bengal. Mangroves are salt tolerant plant species found in the inter-tidal regions along the creeks and estuaries near the coast, on the river mouth. Bhitarkanika is one such location of rich, lush green vibrant eco-system lying in the estuarine region of Brahmani- Baitarani in the North-Eastern corner of Kendrapara district of Odisha. The park is home to eight different species of kingfisher of which the brown-winged (mostly found in eastern India and southwestern Bangladesh), the black-capped and the collared (found along coastal areas) are the most sought after for birders. The core area of the sanctuary, with an area of 145 km2, was declared Bhitarkanika National Park in September 1998. grove forests found in the state of West Bengal within the delta of the Ganga, Brahmaputra, and Meghna rivers, and 2) Bhitarkanika mangroves in the state of Odisha within the delta of the Mahanadi, Brahmini, and Baitarani rivers. [4], Olive ridley turtles arrive in January to March for nesting at Gahirmatha Beach. Bhitarkanika Mangroves is a mangrove wetland in Odisha, India, covering an area of 650 km (400 mi) in the Brahmani and Baitarani river deltas. Media related to Bhitarkanika National Park at Wikimedia Commons, Learn how and when to remove these template messages, Learn how and when to remove this template message, "Bhitarkanika Wetlands of Odisha, India| Saving Wetlands", "Increased number of croc hatchlings in Bhitarkanika", "Bhitarkanika is home to the largest Crocodiles in the world", "Rise in estuarine crocodile populations in Bhitarkanika, Odisha", "3000 spotted deer and wild boars in Bhitarkanika", "Migratory Birds arrive at Bhitarkanika National Park in Odisha", Ministry of Environment and Forests (India), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bhitarkanika_National_Park&oldid=985841591, Articles lacking in-text citations from October 2018, Articles needing additional references from October 2018, All articles needing additional references, Articles with multiple maintenance issues, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2018, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 28 October 2020, at 08:00. Bhitarkanika has one of the largest populations of endangered saltwater crocodile in India and is globally unique in that, 10% of the adults exceed 6 m length.
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