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Gir National Park Closed For Tourists This Monsoon

Gir National Park, the only home to Asiatic lions, will remain closed for tourists during the monsoon season owing to the breeding of wild cats and conservation efforts being undertaken at the sanctuary, forest officials said.

“Its (Gir Forest National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary) closing is being done to provide some privacy to wild animals like lions, leopards and birds like peacocks etc during their mating season as the four months of monsoon period are considered the best for their breeding season,” divisional forest officer, Gir National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, Sandeep Kumar said.

The Gir sanctuary, located at Sasan in Junagadh district, Gujarat, India is only home to pure Asiatic lions and attracts a large number of Indian as well as foreign tourists.

“Since we supervise the conservation efforts, we want to prevent any disturbance in the conservation activities, which could also be caused by the tourists. So we close the sanctuary,” Kumar said, adding that the park would be closed from June 16 and will reopen only in October after the monsoon season is over.

As per the 2010 census, the total number of lions in Gir sanctuary has risen to 411 from 359 in 2005. With a total area of 1,412 sq km (about 258 sq km for the national park and 1153 sq km for the sanctuary), the park is considered as safe haven for the lions and other species.

“It is also a natural habitat for leopards and antelopes like sambar, spotted deer, blue bull, black buck, and wild boar, jackal, hyena, langoors, porcupine, bear and crocodiles and over 250 species of birds,” Kumar said.

The officer also added that the roads in the park are kachcha and get damaged during monsoon. They need to be repaired before allowing tourists to visit (the park) after its closure period is over, he said.

“Not only that we have to monitor the movement of wild animals during rains and in case of heavy rain in the area, we have to chalk out a rescue plan and taking them to safer places,” added Kumar.

In addition, if big cats fall sick, we have to make arrangements for their treatment and that is why the closure of the park during monsoon season is required, he said.

Gir India: The Tourist Attraction Of The World

Gir wildlife sanctuary area: 1153 km2

Gir national park area : 258 km2

Interpretation center: Devaliya

Breeding center : Sakkarbaug Zoo Junagadh

Location : 65 km away from Junagadh (south-east)

Airport: Keshod airport  80 km away

Asiatic lion : panther leo persica (411-as per 2010 census by block direct   total count method)

Different species : Mammals (38 species)

Birds (300 species, 6 species of Vultures)

Insects (2000 species)

Reptiles (37 species)

Total (2,375 spcies)

World of Species at Gir
Asiatic Lions

Sloth Bears
Indian Buffalos
Striped Hyenas
Marsh crocodile
Golden Jackals
Indian Star Tortoise
Indian Mongoose
Monitor Lizard
Jungle Cats
Indian Leopards

Indian Palm Civets

Marsh crocodile is in highest population in India At Gir because of crocodile conservation program from 1977 at Kamleshwar lack is being helpful to preserve crocodile population.

Being Attractive In Gir With Keshari Lion

The Gir national park and wild life sanctuary is an unique identity of Gujarat at world level for not only Asiatic lions but also Kesar mango produces in Junagadh area. Sasan village is the center point of Gir sanctuary. Tulshishyam (natural hot water streams), Kankai ness (religious place of Charan community those are inhabitants of jungle from years), Somnath temple are some places in periphery of Gir wildlife sanctuary. Siddis those are migrants of Africa, are famous for their Dhamal folk dance. Charan is the inhabitant community of Gir, is famous for their affection to lions. It is an amazing experiance to watch a lion either in dusk or dawn while it is on sprawling.

The Major Attractions In The Tour Of Gir India

    * Tulshishyam
    * Somnath
    * Kankai
    * Devaliya
    * Kamleshwar dam
    * Dhamal folk dance of Siddi tribe
    * Hospitality of charan maldhari tribe
    * Driving in hilly roads and dense jungle
    * Kesar mangos
    * Nagva beach of Div
    * Mount Girnar in Junagadh
    * Gupta, Ashoka and Rudradaman script at Sudarshan lake
    * Buddhist caves
    * Adi-Kadi Vav and Navghan kuo (junagadh)