Wildlife is an important factor that determines the real wealth of a nation as mentioned by the renowned author and conservationist Rachel Carson. India is a country of diversity and is blessed with some rare species that cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Let us have a look at those 10 wildlife species found only in India.
Found in Gir National Park in the state of Gujarat, Asiatic Lions belong to the pantherine cat family. The Asiatic lion differs from the African lion in the larger tail tuft, fold of the skin on the abdomen, and thinner curls on the head. According to the latest population estimation, 674 Asiatic Lions exist in Gir National Park.
Great Indian Bustard
Great Indian Bustard (GIB) is the largest bird species mostly found in Gujarat and Rajasthan. Open grasslands serve as their habitat. However, due to its poor eyesight, the GIB population is very low up to 150 due to hunting and as a result of collisions with power transmission lines. Also, solar plants and windmills have resulted in habitat loss.
Found only in Manipur’s Keibul Lamjao National Park, Sangai Deers are also called dancing deers as they jump through their floating grassland habitat (phumdi). The swampy phumdis in the national park are suitable habitats for sangai. The population of Sangai Deers is 260 today.
Lion Tailed Macaque
Belonging to the Monkey family, this unique monkey with a black face, white mane, and lion-like tail is an entertaining animal to watch. Lion Tailed Macaque is found on tree-canopies in the western ghats of Southern India such as Kerala and Karnataka. These are endangered species and are not friendly to humans.
This ungulate, the hooved animal is found in the ghats of Tamilnadu and Kerala. They closely resemble sheep. They have skinny bodies with sturdy hooves and horns pointing backward make them India’s exceptional mountaineers. With aging, their saddle patch changes colors with a life expectancy of only three years.
The subspecies of red deer also called Hangul, the Kashmir Stags are mainly spotted in Dachigam National Park in Kashmir. This brown-coated deer has a light ramp patch without a tail. You can also find them in the northern Chamba district of Himachal Pradesh. Today their population is close to 150.
This rarest elusive mammal found in the western ghats of Kerala is a nocturnal animal. However, it is now getting towards extinction due to deforestation and hunting. Also, its Civetone extract from the scent gland is used in medicine and perfumes which is also contributing to its decreasing numbers.
The world’s smallest and rarest wild pigs are found in Manas National Park of Assam. Their population is less than 250. Thriving in wet grassland, this mammal is from very few ones who build their own home complete with a roof. From near-extinction to conservation of the Pygmy hog, it is expected to get 60 pygmy hogs in Manas by 2025.
Nilgiri Blue Robin
This beautiful songbird has bright blue plumage, white belly feathers, and a black tail with an orange tip. It thrives in the hills of Southern India. They are also known as Nilgir Sholakilis as found in Shola forests of western ghats. They are nearing extinction due to deforestation and hunting.
Ganges River Dolphin
Ganges River Dolphin is a National Aquatic Animal of India. With a population of 3750 today, they are also found in parts of Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, and Bihar.
Thus, although facing the survival threats by deforestation and hunting, conservation efforts are being made to sustain these rare species in India to maintain the national wealth.