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National Chambal Wildlife Sanctuary
 

National Chambal Sanctuary is a wildlife sanctuary near Etawah in Uttar Pradesh, India. It was founded in 1979 and constitutes a large eco-reserve co-administered by the states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. It is also called the National Chambal (Gharial) Wlidlife Sanctuary.

About 400 km of the Chambal river cuts picturesque ravines through the reserve, which covers 5,400 sq.km. In earlier times, the labyrinthine ravines were under the sway of a tradition of banditry by colourful figures like Man Singh and Phoolan Devi. The last notable dacoit, Nirbhay Gujjar was killed in 2005. Today a tourist lodge and other facilities promote eco-tourism.

Wildlife

Apart from the Ganges River Dolphin (Platanista gangetica), the other inhabitants of the sanctuary include magar (crocodile) and gharial (Gavialis gangeticus). This stretch of clear water also supports Marsh Crocodile, Smooth-coated Otters (Lutrogale perspicillata), and six species of Terrapins/Turtles.

More than 250 species of birds may be seen in the sanctuary. Migratory birds from Siberia form part of its rich avian fauna. An endangered bird species that can be spotted here is the Indian skimmer. Winter visitors include Black-bellied Terns, Red-crested Pochard and Ferruginous Pochard, Bar-headed Goose, etc. Other species include Sarus Crane, Great Thick-knee, Indian Courser, Pallas's Fish Eagle, Pallid Harrier, Greater Flamingos and Lesser Flamingos, Darters, and Brown Hawk Owl. The sanctuary is protected under India's Wildlife Protection Act 1972. The sanctuary is administered by the Department of Forest under the Project Officer with headquarter at Morena, Madhya Pradesh.

Part of the sanctuary is under heavy illegal sand mining, which is endangering its fragile ecosystem.

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