Tired of city humdrum? Want to spend your vacation in the lap of nature, away from the concrete jungles? Why not plan to visit Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary? For the bird watchers and ornithologists, it is one of the best places to visit in India. Also known as Keoladeo National Park, Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary invites bird lovers and wildlife enthusiasts from all around the globe every year. Winter is the best time to visit the park because during this time you will get see the various species of Palearctic migrants who come to spend the teeth clattering months with the resident birds. If you are a true nature lover, your holidays in India would be best spent in Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, an abode of about 350 species of birds.
The artificial basins at this premier sanctuary provide the ideal habitat for the alien water birds during the cooler months. While you venture out to discover the flora and fauna at Keoladeo National Park in a cycle rickshaw, you may spot the following birds coming from Siberia, Central Asia and Europe:
- Great White Pelicans:
The great White Pelicans probably find the park to be the best place to spend the winters. These annual visitors may be traced singly or in large groups or in small flocks on the lakes. Prior to swallowing food, these birds prefer to scoop out fishes in their sacks.
- Northern Shoveler:
During winter time, this residents of Northern Asia and Europe prefer migrating to India, Bharatpur Sanctuary being one of their favorite spots. Northern Shovelers travel a long distance from Europe and North Asia across the Himalayas every winter, sometimes resting in the wetlands at the southern part of the Himalayas prior to continuing their journey to India. While taking a tour around the Keoladeo National Park, you may fall upon these common migrants in some marshy areas of the park.
- Marbled Teal:
Common visitors to Keoladeo National Park, the adult male Marbled Teal can be easily identified by their grey neck and head. The white and dark-brown patch surrounding their eyes extends to the nape in which you will find a short crest created with long feathers. Female Marbled Teals though look similar to the males have a shorter crest. You will commonly find these birds in the swampy lakes surrounded by dense bushes.
- Greylag Geese:
These migratory birds are huge in stature. They possess broad wings and appear heavy in flight. If you look at these birds from a distance, you will find them grey-brown. However, a closer look will show that they have more subtle tinges of grey and brown. Barring on neck, back and breast make these birds easily identifiable. The part beneath their tail is white.
Residents of Arctic Tundra region, the Ruffs cannot stand the freezing cold of Arctic areas during winters and choose to migrate to India. One of the reasons why they come to Bharatpur Sanctuary is the easy availability of food needed for the fast growth of their young ones. However, with the arrival of the breeding season, they return back to Tundra and the cycle continues all over again.
Those who take interest in different species of birds will find this national park to be one of the best places to visit in India. If you are a bird watcher, your holidays in India would be, no doubt, an exciting experience when you visit this wildlife sanctuary. The serene surroundings will create a peaceful effect on your mind and soul, and you will be completely transported to a different world while you hear the chirps, whistles and flips of the migratory birds together creating a strange melody.