P. 1



|Views: 136|Likes:
Published by brentlion
dat upon chitwan tigers, by melvin sunquist, featuring info upon feeding behavior, measurements, ect.
dat upon chitwan tigers, by melvin sunquist, featuring info upon feeding behavior, measurements, ect.

More info:

Categories:Types, Research, Science
Published by: brentlion on Jan 23, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less






Royal Chitawan National Park lies in the
Rapti Valley in the Chitawan District at approx-
imately 27°3O'N latitude and 84°20'E longitude
(Figure 1). The valley is bounded on the north
by the Mahabharat Lekh (outer Himalayan
range) and on the south by the low-lying Churia
and Someswar Hills, collectively known as the
Siwaliks. The Siwalik Range runs in a line
roughly parallel to the Indian border and in
places the range divides, forming interior valleys
known as "duns." The Rapti Valley is a "dun"

The park covers an area of 544 km2

(210 mi2
and is situated between the Rapti River, which
forms the northern boundary, and the Reu River,

which forms most of the southern boundary. The
southwestern boundary follows the international
border of Nepal and India for a short distance
and then extends northwards along the Narayani
River, which forms the western boundary. In all,
more than half of the park boundary is delimited
by rivers. In 1977, after this study was terminated,
the park was expanded to about 932 km2






Until 1950 Chitawan and the adjoining forest
areas in central Nepal remained unsettled except
for a few scattered villages of the indigenous
Tharus. The presence of malaria, and a govern-
ment policy discouraging settlement and clearing
afforded protection to the area (Rose, 1971; Bur-
khill, in Stainton, 1972). In addition, the entire
Chitawan District (over 2600 km2

) was the pri-
vate preserve of the privileged classes; Chitawan
was well-known for its abundance and variety of
wild game (Smythies, 1942). Hunting of tiger,
rhino, leopard, and bear was conducted on a
lavish scale for kings and foreign dignitaries and
employed hundreds of elephants and beaters to
drive and encircle the game. Hunts were held at
irregular intervals and limited to the cool months
of December through February. According to
Smythies (1942): during a shoot organized for
King George V of England in 1911, 39 tiger, 18
rhino, and 4 bear were taken in 11 days. In 1921
the Prince of Wales and his party shot 17 tigers,
10 rhinos, 2 leopards, and 2 bears. A total of 41
tigers and 2 leopards was shot during a 20-day
hunt in 1923. The last tiger hunt was in 1938-
1939, extended over the entire Chitawan District,
and produced a bag of 120 tigers, 27 leopards,
and 15 bears.

In the 1950s, with the pressing need for new
agricultural land, the Chitawan District was
opened for settlement and people from northern
Nepal migrated there and began clearing the
forest for cultivation. However, the presence of
malaria was a serious deterrant to settlement. A



Sauraha (camp)

sfi&cSorneswar Hills j

/ Numerous


•—"••"• Park boundary

< 3OOm
BS3 300-459 m
ft&jj 460- 519 m
illljllia 520- 650 m

FIGURE 1.—Location, setting, and topographic features of Royal Chitawan National Park,

malaria eradication program began in 1954, and
by 1960 the entire Chitawan area was declared
malaria free. This, combined with the construc-
tion of roads, accelerated the influx, and by the
early 1960s over two-thirds of the forest and
grassland north of the Rapti River had been put
into cultivation (McDougal, 1977). The destruc-
tion of wildlife habitat by the activities of an
estimated 100,000 people became a serious prob-
lem (Willan, 1965), and His Majesty's Govern-
ment of Nepal, at the recommendation of the
Fauna Preservation Society, created (1961-1962)

Mahendra Park north of the Rapti River and a
rhino sanctuary south of the river (Gee, 1959,
1963; Willan, 1965).
In 1963 a government committee was estab-
lished to examine the legal status of settlers in
Chitawan. This was followed in 1964 by the
creation of a Land Settlement Commission,
which was empowered to remove illegal squatters
and resettle them in other areas in the Rapti
Valley (Willan, 1965). As a result, some 22,000
people were removed, including 4000 who had
settled in the rhino sanctuary. However, grazing


and the collection of forest products were still
allowed within the sanctuary under permits is-
sued by the Forest Department.
In 1970 the King of Nepal approved the estab-
lishment of a national park south of the Rapti
River. This area included the rhino sanctuary.
Preliminary development began in 1971 and in
1973 Royal Chitawan National Park was legally

At present, the park is administered by the
National Parks and Wildlife Conservation De-
partment (NPWCD). There is a Park Warden,
responsible to NPWCD, and over 100 military
guards stationed throughout the park at outposts
called "chowkis." The guards are under a com-
manding officer, who serves as a liaison between
the Army and the NPWCD.

You're Reading a Free Preview

/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->