Pench National Park
Pench National Park is worth visiting atleast once. A place that would be cherished if you visit often.
Land of Mowgli
There goes Akela with his pack following him, wait who is that, a human boy, I see him in the moonlight. Oh!! there is Bagheera, Baloo and the most sinister Sher-Khan. Yes that is Mowgli. Rudyard Kipling gave life to this brave jungle boy from village of Sant Baori in the Seoni hills, which in present day embodies the Pench Tiger Reserve, after Lt. Moor noticed the escapades of a boy and his close contact with the wolf pack.
Pench National Park is partly base in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh and partly in Maharashtra. This is not all about-pench, these forests are also mentioned in the book that was written in Mughal era – “Ain E Akbari”
The labyrinthine of the topography is the beginning of grandiosity of the Seoni hills. The picturesque view is breathtaking as the vastness is revealed. The low- lying hills in the Satpura range comprises of altitudes that ranges from 425 to 625 meters above the sea level. The stunning panorama complements a congregation of hills and valleys in the thick teak and mixed woodlands. Pench National Park is a dense forest region.
The Pench National Park derives its name from the river, Pench, that flows as the backwaters of Totla Doh Dam, through the 54 sq. mt occupying reserve. It give rise to numerous little rivulets, springs, water holes, lakes and streams all around the forest. it provides sustenance to huge numbers of inhabitants in the jungle.
Prominent Places of the Park
Alikatta – the central hub and meeting point of the Park.
Piyorthadi – rocky area famous for leopard sightings.
Junewani Talao – a small picturesque pond.
Jamun Nala Area – mostly Grassland.
Chindimatta – junction of roads from Chindwara-Seoni-Maharashtra.
Sitaghat /Raiyakassa – breathtaking view of the banks of river Pench and bird watching.
Kalapahad – highest point in the park.
Bodha Nala – Lake and a very quaint area
Baghin Nala – most famous for Tiger sightings in the past few seasons
Bijamatta – a pond with rocky terrain and hills nearby.
Karmajhari – Entry gate on other side of Seoni Range.
The area was manipulated and abused for timber, when in 1977, an area of 449.39 sq. mt. was declared as Pench Sanctuary which instantly thwarted this exploitation and made it befitting for wild life. This success motivated the government and it declared Pench as a National Park in 1983 followed by the title of Tiger Reserve of India in 1993, making it the 19th one in India.
Pench is still diversifying and growing, yet in times to come it will prove to be the best reserve for the coming generations of our National animal – TIGER…
Pench showcases a plethora of foliage in the tropical dry deciduous forests. It houses more than 1200 species of floral elements, many of which are ethnobiologically significant and various endangered. Myrid herbs and shrubs cover the terrain while on the slopes bamboo and grasslands appear in patches. The forest is a home for teak, saja, dhawa. lendia, bel, harra, salai, gunjan, bahera, jamun, arjun, char, kosum, tendu, aonla, bija, kullu (ghost tree), amaltas, and haldu.
Mammals – There are thirty nine species of mammals found at Pench. Tiger and Leopard are the tertiary carnivores that are placed at the top of the food pyramid. Other mega fauna that inhabits the park are gaur, sambar deer, nilgai, chital deer, barking deer, Indian gazelle, sloth bear, wild dog, four horned deer, Hanuman Langur, wolf, hyena, jackal, fox, hare, mongoose, rhesus macaque, wild boar and small nocturnal animals like civets, ratel, pangolin and porcupine.
Reptiles – There are 30 species of reptiles like Indian Cobra, Python, Red Sand Boa, Krait, Russell’s viper, Keel backs, Rat Snake and more.
Others – Thousands of insect species belonging to various genera inhabit the park. 45 Butterfly species like Mormon Princeps, Yellow Swallowtail, Common Tiger, Baronet, Crimson Rose, 54 Moth types, Dragonflies etc. are interesting subjects for scientific research.
Mammals – the tiger and leopard are at the top of the food chain in the forest. The other denizens of the forest includes gaur, sambar deer, nilgai, chital deer, barking deer, Indian gazelle, sloth bear, wild dog, four horned deer, Hanuman Langur, wolf, hyena, jackal, fox, hare, mongoose, rhesus macaque, wild boar and small nocturnal animals like civets, ratel, pangolin and porcupine. All in all there are 39 species of mammals found here.
Birds – More than 285 species of birds can be found in the woodlands making it the most desirable location for bird watching in the central India. Many migratory water birds migrate here due to the water bodies found. Some of the species that have made this area their home seasonally or permanantly include – Malabar Pied Hornbill, Shama, Painted Francolin, Brahminy Duck, Bar headed Geese, Grey Francolin, Alexandrine Parakeet, Iora, Peacock, Indian Pitta, Large Egret, Great Cormorant, Jungle Bush Quail, Blue Breasted Quail, Barred Button Quail, Greater Racket Tailed Drongo, Asian Paradise Flycatcher, White Bellied Drongo, Changeable Hawk Eagle, White Eyed Buzzard, Plum Headed Parakeet, Black Lored Tit, Great Tit, Coppersmith Barbet, Brown Headed Barbet, Mottled Wood Owl, Brown Fish Owl, Spotted Owlet, Barred Jungle Owlet, Indian Scops Owl, Northern Pintail, Osprey, Shikra, Indian Scimitar Babbler, Red Jungle Fowl, Painted Spurfowl, Red Spurfowl, Lesser Whistling Teal, Shoveler, Crow Pheasant and Vultures
Insects – There are uncountable number of insect, belonging to various species are found here. Butterfly species like Mormon Princeps, Yellow Swallowtail, Common Tiger, Baronet, Crimson Rose more than 45 species find shelter in these forests. Moths, Dragonflies in-habitat here.
Pench national park is spread over a staggering area of 1179 sq. km. With 411 sq. km. being the core area and 768 sq. km. Serving as the buffer area. The park itself falls under the protection of the project Tiger reserve. This project was approved and acknowledged by Central Government of India. The park covers the disticts of Chindwara and Seoni in the southern MP while 257 sq. km. lies in the state of Maharashtra.
Tourism gained popularity post the release of the documentary “spy in the jungle’ on BBC in the year 2008 which showcased the behavior of the tigers and was narrated by Sir Davis Attenborough. ‘The jungle book’ a Walt Disney Production, made the park foray on the world map.
Presently the park is open for tourists from 16th October to 31st June and it is being endeavored to keep it going on from 1st October in the coming season.
The park is open from 16th October to 31st June presently and efforts are on to have it opened from 1st October from the coming season.
Longitude : 79007’45” E to 79022’30”
Latitude: 21037’N to 21050’30” E
Altitude : 425-675 Mt. Above MSL
Rainfall : 1397 mm