Sita Mata Wildlife Sanctuary

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          Sita Mata Wildlife Sanctuary - Pratapgarh


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                                                                              Sita Mata Wildlife Sanctuary
Introduction of Sita Mata Wildlife Sanctuary

Sita Mata Wildlife Sanctuary is a wildlife sanctuary which is located in south-east portion of Pratapgarh district (Rajasthan) of India, This sanctuary is declared as the protected forest area. This sanctuary is a dense forest land Having an area of 422.95 square kilometers which is about 40% of the total land area of this developing district. Sita Mata Wild life Sanctuary is the major attraction in Pratapgarh. The topography of the area is undulating because of the confluence of three different geological formations- Malwa Plateau, Vindhyachal Hills and Aravali ranges.

A Sanctuary with Rich Bio-diversity

It is the only forest area, where more than half of the trees are high building value teak. Salar (Boswellia Serrata Rox. ex coleb), Tendu (Diospyros melonoxy Roxb.), Bad (Ficus bengalensis), Peepal (Ficus Religiosa Linn), Babool (acacia arabica), Neem (Azadiracta Indica), Arinja (Acasia leucophea), Siras, Churail, Kachnar, Gulmohar, Amaltas, Bakayan, Ashok, Mahua, Semal, Goondi, Khejadi (propis specigera), Kumta (acacia rupesris), Amla, bamboo, Sindoor, chironjee, Rudraksha'' and Bel trees are also seen here in abundance. Out of 108 varieties of high value medicinal herbs, 17 belong to the '32 endangered varieties' that are found here.

Sita Mata: A birds' Paradise

A large number of residential and migratory birds are seen in this region out of which about 130 varities are most comman. Little grebe, little cormorant, Indian darter (Snake bird) Gray Heron, Pond heron, cattle egret, little egret, painted stork, white necked stork, spoonbill, lesser whistling thrush, Rubby shelduck, Pintail, cotton teal, spotbill, Nukta, Parah kite, shikra, white eyed buzzard, king vulture, white backed vulture, Tawny eagle, white scavenger vulture, Eastrel, Black patridge, Rain Quail, Jungle bush quail, Indian peafowl, Saras crane, White breasted waterhen, Moorhen, Purple moorhen, common coot, pheasant tailed jacana, Red vettled lapwing, Red shank, wood sandpiper, common sandpiper, Little stint, Black winged stilt, stone curlew, Indian courser, River tern, common sandgrouse, Green pigeon, Blue rock pigeon, Red turtle dove, Indian ring dove, spotted dove, little brown dove, Alexzandrine parakeet, rose ringed parakeet, blossom headed parakeet, common hawk cukkoo, pied crested cuckoo, koel, crow pheasant, spotted owlett, collared scopes owl, franklis nightjar, house swift, palm swift, pied kingfisher, comman kingfisher, white breasted kingfisher, Green bee-eater, blue tailed eater, blue cheecked bee eater, Indian Roller( Blue Jay) European Roller, Hoopoe, Gray Hornbill, Coppersmith, Golden backed woodpecker, yellow fronted pied woodpecker, Indian Pitta, Red winged bush lark, Ashy crowned finchlark, rufous tailed finchlark, crested lark, Dusky craig martin, wiretailed swallow, Red rumpted swallow, Gray shrike, Bay backed shrike, rufous backed shrike, Golden oriole, black drongo (King Crow), white bellied drongo, Brahmini Myna, Rody Paster, Comman Myna, Bank Myna, Indian tree pie, House crow, Jungle crow, Black headed cuckkoo shrike, Scarlet minivet, Common Iora, Red vented Bulbul, Comman babbler, Yellow eyed Babbler, Large Gray babbler, Gray headed flycatcher, Red breasted flycatcher, white browed fantail flycatcher, paradise flycatcher, Franklin's ween warbler, Tailor bird, lesser white throat, Indian robin, crested bunting Magpie Robin, Brown rockchat, collared bushchat, pied bushchat, large cuckoo shike, wood shrike, gray tit, yellow cheecked tit, yellow headed wagtail, gray wagtail, white wagtail, purple sunbird, white eye, house sparrow, weaver bird, Red Avadant, white throated Munia, Scaly breasted Munia, are a few varieties that are comman to this forest region.For the first time in rajasthan two new bird varieties were noticed in Sita Mata WL sanctuary about five years ago, they are- White-throated Ground Thrush and Black-necked Monarch.

Specific Attraction

The most striking animal of Sita Mata sanctuary is the vegetarian mammal flying squirrel ('Petaurista-philippensis'), which can be seen gliding from one tree to another just around sunset at Arampura forest chowki, that was 17 km away from Dhariyawad.

Its feeding-activities include nocturnal and therefore it hides during the day time in its hollow on a Mahua tree. The best time to watch flying squirrels is between February and March, during this time most of the mahua trees shed their leaves and it is easier during this time to spot the squirrel gliding between branches of leafless trees.

The Sanctuary provides rich pastures for a variety of deer that includes the Chousingha (four-horned antelope). Caracal, wild boar,pangolin, leopard, hyena, jackal, fox, jungle cat, porcupine, spotted deer, wild bear, and neelgai are other animals that were found here. As per the wild life census conducted on 17 May 2011, the number of wild life animals in the sanctuary was 1711 (inclusive of 10 leopards,538Jackals, 38 hyenas, 39 foxes, 117 jungle cats etc)

Best Season to visit Sitamata Sanctuary is from October to February.

Other tourism spots in the Sanctuary
This sanctuary also houses ancient Valmiki Ashram Which was the birthplace of Luv and Kush (the twins born to Sita and Lord Rama), Hanuman and Sitamatatemples and other places of historical and mythological importance. Another significant place of interest in the Sanctuary which is about 5 km from 'Tikhi Magri' is 'Lakhiya Bhata'- where series of prehistoric animals are engraved on rocks. An annual fair in the sanctuary is held at the Sita Mata temple in July.

Location of Sita Mata Wildlife Sanctuary

The sanctuary is situated in Pratapgarh district of Rajasthan.The thickly wooded Sita Mata Wildlife Sanctuary sprawls over the Aravali ranges and the Malwa plateau, with seasonal rivers - Jakham, Karmoi, Sitamata, Budhho, and Tankiya flowing through the forest. Jakham is the major one. Situated at around 45 km from Pratapgarh and 108 km from the divisional Hqrs. Udaipur,the sanctuary, covering 423 km2. of mainly dry deciduous vegetation has exceptionally rich flora and fauna. The type of forest here is as per classification of Champion and Seth, Sita Mata is known as 'IInd Dry Tropical Forest'.

From the early times the north-west part of Pratapgarh region had dense forests consisting of valuable Sagwaan, Chandan, Sheesham, Saalar, Dhaak, Dhonk, Kadamb, Mahua, Babool, Imlee and Baans trees that were found here in abundance and therefore, in 1828 AD, a separate state forest department was founded to manage state's exceptionally rich forest wealth.

How to reach Pratapgarh?

By Rail: Pratapgarh is yet to be connected with a railway line. Nearest railway station is Mandsaur (M.P.) (28 km) & Chittorgarh (110 km).

By Road: Pratapgarh is well linked with major cities in Rajasthan, Gujarat & Madhya Pradesh by road. Daily Bus Services Connect Pratapgarh with Chittorgarh (110 km), Banswara (85 km), Udaipur (126 km), Dungarpur (160 km), Rajsamand (133 KM), Jodhpur (400 km), Jaipur (336 km) in Rajasthan; Ratlam (85 km), Mandsaur (32 km) in M.P and Delhi (705 km).

By Air: Dabok Airport (Udaipur) is 145 kms. Taxis are also available.

                                      Painted Stork                                 Pond Heron
                   Blue Rock Pigeon in the Sanctuary                                Hyena in the Sanctuary

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