only 6 km.away from Jammu City, this sanctuary occupies an area
of 31 sq.km. The area sustains 8 mammal species including nilgai
and barking deer and 15 species of birds. The best season for
mammal viewing is September to March and for bird viewing March
to May. Within the sanctuary is a two bedrooms hut. For passes
contact the Regional Wildlife Warden, Jammu. The highest, youngest
& largest chain of mountains in the world, the Himalayan
range is one of the most fascinating and spectacular natural
wonders on earth. It is more than that: it is one of the richest
stores of animal life. For instance, it is remarkable that almost
one third of the world's mammalian species that may be called
true mountain animals are native to these mountains. Jammu and
Kashmir with its variety of geographical regions, climates and
vegetation has many delights to offer the wildlife enthusiast.
Perphas no animal better epitomizes the character and concerns
of the mountain environment than the snow leopard, a beautiful
and elusive survivor from the frigid Pleistocene era. Though
its range is immense, extending over the entire Himalayan range,
it is most advantageously sought in Jammu and Kashmir especially
in the high ranges. Another rare animal is the hangul or Kashmir
stag, one of the most endangered species of red deer in the
world. An enigmatic mammal is the bharal; the controversy over
whether it is a sheep or a goat is not yet settled. Many unique
species of antelope, goat and sheep are found in the state.
In winter high-altitude bird species move to the lower valleys
and into the tourist's purview.
sparrows, the black and yellow grosbeak, black bulbuls and monal
pheasants (the male splendidly colored) may be seen now. At
this time too large troops of the impressive Himalayan gray
languor visit for the duration.
But nothing strikes the eye and imagination so much as in spring
and summer, when the long foothills and deep valleys awake to
life, Now also awakes the imposing Himalayan black bear and
as the winter return to higher quarters the birds of the
summer return. Among these is the lovely golden oriole. The
langurs and handful, too make their way to higher valleys that
are not however inaccessible. Though wildlife conservation in
Ladakh began fairly recently, there is much here that is not
found in the lower ranges. Ladakh's ecosystem, lying at the
confluence of three zoogeographic zones, is fascinating and
uniquely varied. A dozen important mammals and over 100 species
of birds make their home in this rugged terrain most of them,
though endangered or rare. The wild yak is native only to this
area. Other animals include the ibex, blue sheep, bharal, docile
marmot and mouse hare. The snow leopard roams here too; so does
the wild horse and the rare musk deer inhabits lower altitudes.
Unfortunately some species are still outside the tourist's domain.
Jammu and the Kashmir valley however have led wildlife conservation
efforts. Several National Parks and Sanctuaries have been established
in the state.
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