General Information on Corbett National Park
India’s and Asia’s first national park, the Jim Corbett National Park was established in Nainital, Uttarakhand, is a perfect place for nature enthusiasts and wildlife lovers. It is a wonderful place in India considered as a hub of excitement and thrill. The whole extent of the park is divided into many zones for wildlife tourism. Spread over an area of 520 square kilometers, the park is a complete package for wildlife buffs. However, tourism is only allowed in the earmarked areas of the Corbett Tiger Reserve in order to maximize the chances of viewing its splendid landscape and the diverse wildlife living in the park. The recent trend of the tourist visit that has been marked by the park authority shows dynamic increase in the number of visitors coming every year. More than 1,00,000 visitors come to the park in peak season from the different part of the country and abroad.
Background of Jim Corbett National Park :
On 8th August 1936, India’s and also Asia’s first national park was established as Hailey National Park, named after then Governor of United Provinces, British India, Sir Malcolm Hailey. It was renamed as Ramganga National Park in 1954-55 and again renamed as Corbett National Park in 1955-56. The British government had thought of establishing a game reserve as early as 1907 but it was only in 1936 that it came into fruition assisted by hunter-turned-conservationist Jim Corbett but soon after establishing, hunting, killing and capturing of mammals, reptiles and birds were prohibited. The reserve area initially consisted of about 324 sq. km. Some areas of the park were earlier part of the princely state of Tehri Garhwal. It then passed onto the British and now forms a part of the state of Uttarakhand.
Current Facts about Jim Corbett National Park :
When the Government of India launched Project Tiger in 1973, the park became a part of this project. The present area of the reserve is 1,318.54 sq km (509.09 sq mi) including 520 sq km (200 sq mi) of core area and 797.72 sq km (308.00 sq mi) of buffer area. The core area forms the Jim Corbett National Park while the buffer contains reserve forests (496.54 sq km (191.72 sq mi)) as well as the Sonanadi Wildlife Sanctuary (301.18 sq km (116.29 sq mi)). The reserve is located between the Siwalik Himalayas and the Terai. The park has 8 ecotourism zones namely, Dhikala, Bijrani, Garjiya, Jhirna, Sonanadi, Durgadevi, Phato and Dhela.
Corbett National Park is home to 488 species of plants and is famous for Royal Bengal Tigers, Asiatic Elephants. It also contains over 586 species of resident and migratory species of birds making it one of the richest bird regions in India. Birdlife International has declared the area as ‘Important Bird Area’. It contains 25 species of reptiles including the Indian python. The park also has 7 species of amphibians including crocodiles and Gharials. Apart from tigers, Corbett also has leopards. Other mammals such as jungle cat, barking deer, spotted deer, sambar deer, sloth, chital, Himalayan black bears, langurs, rhesus macaques, otters, etc. are also found there. This program is intended for the protection of three of the five flagship species namely, the Bengal tiger, the Asiatic elephant and Gharial. The national park is a protected area covered by the World Wide Fund (WWF) for Nature under their Terai Arc Landscape Program. The park’s landscape is diverse including ridges, streams, plateaus, ravines, grasslands, deciduous forests and pine forests.
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