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 PLACES NEAR TAJ MAHAL - Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
Prime Attractions : Keoladeo National Park, Bharatpur (also known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary)
Area: 28.73 sq. km.
Location: 50 kms from Agra, 176 kms from Jaipur and 210 km from Delhi.
Best time to visit: throughout the year. Breeding season August to October. Migrants: October to February.
Main species found: Siberian crane, cormorant, stork, spoon bill, quail, coot, heron, teal, tern, sambar, chital, blackbuck, wild boar, civet, etc.

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One can spectate colourful kingfishers, graceful pelicans, rare Siberian cranes and trans-continental fliers-the migratory water-fowl are amongst the 375 species of birds found in the Keoladeo National Park. The most spectacular nesting is that of the egrets, storks, herons and cormorants which make over 10,000 nests every year. This makes the sanctuary one of the outstanding bird havens of the world.

Bharatpur was earlier known as the best duck shooting resort in the British empire. After independence, in 1956, the State Government declared Keoladeo as a reserve for birds. In 1981 this land was upgraded to a National Park. Being a unique bird place, the UNESCO has recognized it as a world heritage site.

The park is now India’s best water-bird sanctuary. It is truly a paradise of feathered life which provides unlimited opportunities to the bird watchers, wildlife photographers, landscape painters, writers on nature and researchers in Biology.


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The first rain of the monsoon makes the park come alive thousands of egrets, storks, darters, ibises, herons, spoonbills, jacanas and other birds get busy courting, mating and nesting. The most prominent water-fowl coming to this park are barheaded and greylag geese. Ducks also create a lot of fluttering in the lakes. The ducks usually found here are pintail, widgeon, common shelduck, ruddy shelduck, shoveler, garganey, teal, green winged teal, mallard, pochard etc. The other predatory birds include, tawny eagles, spotted eagles, short-toed eagles, imperial eagles and fishing eagles also arrive. They all form the apex of the biological pyramid of the sanctuary and complete the avian food chain of the ecosystem. There are large herds of nilgai, chital, wild boar and feral cows, in addition to a few herds of sambar.

Visiting the sanctuary by cycle rickshaws is the best mode of transportation. One can also enjoy boating in the sanctuary (subject to water conditions).
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