The best part of our trip to Chikmagalur district last summer was the time spent at the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary. This sanctuary is one of the best forest reserves that we have been to and would love to visit this place again.
Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over an area of 493 square kilometers. It was established in 1974 and declared as a Project tiger reserve. The sanctuary is also known as Muthodi Wildlife Sanctuary and was declared as the 25th Project Tiger of India in 1998. In 1951, the reserve was known as Jagara Wildlife Sanctuary comprising of 78 square kilometers, later it was expanded to the current size.
Jagara is a village located very near to Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary. The sanctuary is bounded by Mullaianagiri, Hebbegiri, Gangegiri, Kemmanagundi and Bababudangiri hills. Kallhathigiri is the highest peak in this region (1875 mts). We spent a great part of the time sitting on the rocks of one of the tributaries of the Bhadra River running through the sanctuary. The air in the forest is crisp, clear and clean.
The Bhadra reservoir is situated on the border of the sanctuary making the place look more scenic and photogenic.
The luxuriant green vegetation of the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary consists of mostly moist and dry deciduous forests. More than 120 species of trees grow here, which include Teak, Rosewood, Jackfruit, Mathi, Honne, Nandi, Bamboo, Nandi, Medicinal plants, Tadasalu and Kindal.
Orchids, Moss, Ferns, Shrubs, Wild Flowers, and Creepers complete the green picture.
A big teak tree called Jagara Giant with a girth of 5.21 mts and aged about 300 years is one of the attractions of the sanctuary.
Variety of wild life thrives in these dark and deep forests. Gaur, Tigers, Leopard, Wild Dog, Jackal, Chital, Sambar, Elephants, Boar, Porcupine, Muntjac, Barking Deer, Mouse Deer, Sloth Bear, Common Langur, Bonnet Macaque, Slender Loris and the Malabar Giant Squirrel have made their home here.
More than 250 species of birds are found here. Our necks ached from peering high into the trees to spot some of these exotic birds. The highlights are the Great Horn bill and the River Tern.
Slithering into the forests are many reptiles like King Cobras, Pythons, Indian Monitor, Gliding Lizards, Flying Lizards etc. We saw a very long Rat Snake cross the road in full speed!
Striking butterflies flutter delightfully in the forests and the varieties include great orange tips, bamboo tree browns, blue pansy butterfly, yamfly, baronet, crimson rose, southern birdwing, tailed jay.
Various activities like jungle safaris, boat ride to islands to spot River Terns, water sports; trekking, island camping, bird watching and rock climbing organized by the forest department keep the visitors engaged.
A small temple built in 1986 near the entrance of the forest officials residence complex is dedicated to Lord Ganesh. This was built because an elephant used to come daily and bang on the window of the RFO quarter with its trunk and caused fear to the staff. Worried by this, the RFO prayed to god and owed to construct a Ganesha temple. Accordingly this temple was constructed and the elephant’s visit to the place gradually stopped.
During the month of April – May, the jungle safaris are canceled due to fear of forest fire.
Type of Place: Wildlife Sanctuary
Situated: Chikmagalur District, Karnataka
Distance: 285 Km from Bangalore, 190 Km from Mangalore, 83 Km from Hassan, 38 Km from Chikmagalur
Transport: Well connected by road. The nearest Railway station to Bhadra is Kadur, 40kms away.
Facilities: Dormitory and suite accommodation maintained by forest department are available. For visitors, rest rooms are available.
The Deputy Conservator of Forests,
Bhadra Tiger Reserve,
Chikmagalur – 577 101
Ph: 08262-234904. Fax: 08262-230032; 08262-228026
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
The Principal Chief Conservator of Forests ( Wildlife )
Aranya Bhavan, Malleshwaram,
18th Cross, Bangalore – 560 003
Karnataka – INDIA
Phone : Office +91-80-3341993
E-mail – firstname.lastname@example.org
River Tern Lodge,
Jungle Lodge and Resort