Kanha Tiger Reserve

Kanha is tucked away in the Eastern part of the Central-Indian Satpura Range. Legendary for its wilderness, tiger sightings and great birding- Kanha promises to be a special experience. Immensely rich in game, Kanha has the distinction of harboring the last of the highly endangered Hard Ground Barasingha, a major conservation milestone. The vast size of the park makes extended explorations possible and Kanha is a favorite with photographers for its sheer quality of wildlife viewing. It stretches over an area of 940 km² in the two districts Mandla and Balaghat. Together with a surrounding buffer zone of 1009 km² and the neighboring 110 km² Phen Sanctuary it forms the Kanha Tiger Reserve. The park is also a good place to see the Leopard, Sloth Bear, Asiatic Wild Dog and Indian Bison.

Two river valleys are prominent features of the park’s topography: the Banjar in the west and the Halon in the east. Both these rivers are tributaries of the Narmada, which flows through the district headquarters town of Mandla, 64 km (40 miles) to the northwest of the park’s western entrance. Kanha’s valleys are enclosed by hills topped with plateaus- locally called dadar. These plateaus are covered with vast grasslands, the park also has expansive meadows left behind by the villages relocated outside the park. There are many perennial springs that provide the much sought for water in the drier months. Shravantal is the main water body in the central meadows that attracts a lot of wildlife to it.  During the greener months Kanha is a landscape photographer’s dream come true.

This lowland forest is a mixture of Sal and various other forest trees, interspersed with meadows. The highland forests are tropical moist, dry deciduous type and of a completely different nature with bamboo on the slopes. A very good looking Indian ghost tree (kullu) can also be seen in the dense.

Kanha Tiger Reserve abounds in meadows or maidans which are basically open grasslands that have sprung up in fields of abundant villages, evacuated to make way for the animals. There are many species of grass recorded at Kanha some of which are important for the survival of Barasingha. Dense forested zones with good crown cover has abundant flourishing species of climbers, shrubs and herbs. Aquatic plants in numerous “Tal” (lakes) are life line for migratory and wetland species of birds. The big mammals of Kanha are the charismatic Tiger, the smarter cat leopard and Baloo the sloth bear of “Jungle Book” fame. The list is compounded by presence of super reptiles like the python, russels viper, krait, boa, the keel backs, etc. The Sal paradise of Kanha dosen’t disappoint the avid birdwatcher either.

The most abundant prey species for the large predators here is the spotted deer. The sambar deer comes a close second. Along with Sher khan, Kanha also houses many other predators like the ferocious dholes, elusive leopards and the rare sloth bear.

Kanha Quick Facts

Area: 1945 sq km

Nearest Railway Station & Airport : Jabalpur(165km). Alternatively one can also travel from Nagpur(300km).

Latitude: 22.3333° N

Longitude: 80.6333° E

Weekly Off: Wednesday Evening

Safari Gates: Khatiya & Mukki. distance between both is approximately 40 km

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