As you know that the Royal Bengal tiger is one of the endangered species of India. Project Tiger is an endeavor to protect this tiger from extinction in India. Mudumalai National Park was established to protect endangered animals like the Royal Bengal tiger, Leopard, Long-billed vulture. Other endangered animals found here are Gaur, Indian elephant and white-rumped vulture from extinction.
More than 300 families were shifted to establish this park. Mudumalai National Park has an area of 321 square kilometers. The Indian Government declared it as a Tiger reserve in the year 2007. This park is a world heritage site.
The park is located in Nilgiri district of Tamil Nadu. The park is divided into five areas called Kargudi, Nellakota, Mudumalai, Masinagudi and Thepakadu
Mudumalai boasts of three types of forests
- Tropical and moist forest
Dry and deciduous forest
This is due to the fact that the western areas of the park receive more rains than the eastern parts.
Photo by Koshyk
What to see and expect in Mudumalai National Park
For an avid nature lover there are bountiful views and sights, be it flora or fauna. Nature has blessed this park with very colorful creatures that live on a green carpet of high lands.
The forests of Mudumalai are filled with trees such as Rosewood, Mango, Peepal, Banyan, Teak, Tamarind, Plumeria, Ardesia, Rice, cinnamon, guava, turmeric, pepper and mango. The summer blooms and monsoon fruits attract hordes of visitors to these parts.
Photo by gkrishna63
Can you guess how many species of animals live here? 13% of the total mammal species 8% of the total bird species in India are found in Mudumalai national park. The answer to the above question is an amazing 55 mammal species, 34 reptile species, 21 amphibian species, 50 fish species and 227 birds.
Here is a list of the animals that you can see
- Royal Bengal Tiger
- Sloth bear
- Indian leopard
- Flying lizard
- Red giant flying squirrel
- Chital Deer
- Sambhar deer
- Grey langur
- Leopard cat
- Bonnet Macaque
- Striped Hyena
- Golden jackal
- Indian elephants
- Asian pit viper
- Speculated Cobra
- Jungle cat
Bird species consist of 110 insect-eating birds, 23 fish-eating birds, 12 omnivores, 20-grain feeders and 65 carnivores’ birds.
Photo by wallygrom
Birds fly in great abandon here. Some noted ones are Crescent hawk eagle, peacock, Large racket Tailed Dronge, Brown dove, Harriers, Malabar whistling thrush, quails, Grey Partridge, buzzards, crescent serpent Eagle, Rufous-bellHawk-eagle, google-eyed plower, King vulture, Red Spurfowl, Fairy-bluebird, chlorosis, golden great black woodpecker, peafowl, emerald dove, Indian cuckoo, oriental honey-buzzard, Loten’s Sunbird, Alpine swift, Malabar trogon, green imperial pigeon, bulbuls, Magpie-robin and Malabar-whistling thrush.
The route to reach there
The nearest commercial place to this national park is Gudalur at a distance of 3 kms by road. The distance between this park and major cities like Ooty and Mysore by road is 39 kms and 100 kms respectively.
You can come to Ooty by train from any part of India. From Ooty, there are many taxis plying to and fro to the Mudumalai.
The nearest airport is the Banglore airport at 35.5 kms.
Photo by Rahul S. Nair
Some minor details about the park that you can use
- There are treetop accommodations in this park
- You can view two amazing falls called Moyar and Kallaty in Mudumalai National Park
- Other attractions are trekking, Elephant Safari, Road safari and Jungle safari (check out timings on the Government website)
- It’s best to visit Mudumalai between June and December.
- As the place is very popular now, and the bookings fill up faster, it is better to make advance hotel bookings.
- You can take your own vehicle into the park, but noise levels have to be kept to the minimum – avoid cell phone calls, the vehicle noise should be minimum etc
- If you want to spot animals, go early in the morning or wait until late in the evening
- Avoid jazzy clothes and strong fragrances so that the animals are not distracted
- A good guide can help you spot rare wild animals with ease
Nilgiris is an ecosystem in itself. A visit to this national park is a lesson in the conservation of animals like the Tiger which were cruelly poached in the previous century.