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Velavadar Blackbuck National Park

Location: Gujarat

Main Wildlife Attractions: Blackbuck,Wolf, Lesser Florican,jackals, Hyenas

Coverage Area: 34 sq.kms

Established: 1976

Best Time to Visit:December to March

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Akin to the sea coast of the Gulf of Khambat in the southern part, and surrounded by wastelands in the northern terrain, this unique grassland provides shelter to a wide variety of flora and fauna of India. The endangered species of Blackbuck finds a home amidst this savannah type grassland. One of the threatened species in India, the elegant blackbuck can only survive if grassland habitats such as Velavadar are effectively managed and protected.

As the sun sets and the temperature drops, creatures hidden in the Velavadar Blackbuck National Park begin a chorus of rhythmic howls. When a pack begins to call in unison in the wild, time stands still and it can unnerve you. Other than the blackbuck, Velavadar National Park also shelters jackals, nilgais, hyenas, jungle dogs etc. These animals can be viewed from very close quarters due to the savannah grasslands. You may see the footprints, scats and scratch of the jackals if you are observant enough. These opportunistic feeders prey on Black buck, nilgai and cattles. These jackals make frequent visits to the nearby villages to feed on carrion and scrounge for food.

Velavadar Blackbuck National Park was previously the private fiefdom of the late Maharaja of Bhavnagar. With time, it has been converted to a tourist spot and now, it stands the claim of being Gujarat's second largest wildlife destination, after Gir National Park. This terrain is also a favorite breeding ground of the Sarus crane and oft you will see the twittering birds trying to attract their counterparts, through the call of mating.