Wildlife of India's Kanha National Park Inspired The Jungle Book

December 22, 2011
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Kanha National Park is home to a wide variety of creatures from tigers to peacocks to elephants. It is such a scenic nature travel destination that Rudyard Kipling used it as his inspiration for the classic children's story, The Jungle Book.

There is a wide variety of creatures that live in the park — including wild dogs, leopards, pythons, sloth bears and 300 bird species — but the barasingha (swamp deer) is perhaps the park's most iconic resident next to the royal Bengal tiger. These deer were near extinction a few decades ago, but preventative actions were taken to protect them. Now they are safer but still considered a vulnerable species. The barasingha stick to meadow lands and forests near riverbeds, and often tigers can be spotted in outlying areas near groups of these deer.

Travelers who embark on an India tour during the mating season, which usually runs between September and April, can hear the unique mating calls of the males across the Kanha National Park as they compete for the attention of the females. They make two distinct sounds — a roaring call and a 'hee haw' noise — which may sound similar to the alarmed cries of swamp deer being hunted by tigers or other jungle cats.


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