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Simlipal
 
Simlipal
 

Simlipal National Park is a national park and a Tiger Reserve situated in the Mayurbhanj district in the Indian state of Orissa. Simlipal National Park derives its name from the abundance of Semul or red silk cotton trees that bloom vividly.

The park has an area of 845.70 square kilometres (326.53 sq mi) and has some beautiful waterfalls like Joranda and Barehipani. Simlipal is home to ninety-nine Royal Bengal Tigers, 432 Wild elephants. Besides Simlipal is famous for Gaurs (Indian Bisons), Chausingha, as well as an orchidarium.

One can enter into Similipal through Pithabata (22 kilometres (14 mi) from Baripada) and Jashipur. Entry permits can be obtained from the Range Officer, Pithabata check gate upon paying prescribed fees. Day visitors can enter between 6 AM & 12 Noon and visitors with reservation between 6 AM & 2 PM. Similipal National Park remains open from 1 October to 15 June only.

Flora and fauna

The park is a treasure house of 1076 species of plants belonging to 102 families. 96 species of orchids have also been identified here. It has a mixed type of vegetation known as Orissa semi-evergreen forests with tropical moist broadleaf forest and tropical moist deciduous forests with dry deciduous hill forest and high level Sal forests. The grasslands and the savannas provide grazing grounds for the herbivores and hiding place to the carnivores. The forest boasts of innumerable medicinal and aromatic plants, which provide a source of earnings for the tribal. Eucalyptus, plantated by the Britishers during the 1900 are also found.

A total of 42 species of mammals, 242 species of birds and 30 species of reptiles have been recorded in Simlipal National Park. The major mammals include Tiger, Leopard, Asian elephant, Sambar, Barking deer, Gaur, Jungle cat, Wild boar, Chausingha (four horned antelope), Giant squirrel and Common langur. 231 species of birds nest in these forests. Red Junglefowl, Hill Mynah, Peacock, Alexandrine Parakeet, Crested Serpent Eagle are the commonly found bird. The Grey Hornbill, Indian Pied Hornbill, Malabar Pied Hornbill and Indian Trogon are also found in the reserve. Apart from the large number of mammals and bird species, the park has a sizeable population of reptiles, which includes snakes and turtles. The "Mugger Crocodile Management Programme" has helped the Mugger crocodile (Crocodylus palustris) to survive and flourish on the banks of Khairi river.

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    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simlipal_National_Park
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