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Bannerghatta National Park
Bannerghatta National Park was founded in 1971 and declared as a national park in 1974.
Bannerghatta National Park
In 2002 a part of the park was converted into a biological reserve and named as the Bannerghatta Biological Park. It is a popular tourist destination comprising a zoo, a pet corner, an animal rescue centre, a butterfly enclosure, an aquarium, a snake house and a safari park. There are ancient temples in the park for worship and it is a destination for trekking too.
The Zoo Authority of Karnataka, the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, and the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE) are collaborating agencies of the park.
Within the national park area there exist six rural villages enclosed within three large enclosures for sheep and cattle farming. The 25,000 acre national park is located about 22 km south of Bangalore in the hills of the Anekal range with an elevation of 1245 – 1634m.
The park has a mountainous topography of granite sheets under moist deciduous forest valleys and scrubland on higher areas. Sixteen villages frame the park. The park is division of a wildlife passage for elephants which connects the BR Hills and the Sathyamangalam forest.
The park is adjacent to the Talli reserve forest in the southeast and Bilikal forest in the south. The biological park is a zoological reserve named for Y. M. L Sharma, a Conservator of Forests of Karnataka, who appealed for the creation of the park. It is an asylum to mammals such as Indian tigers (including white tigers) and lions.
The park offers safari excursions managed and supported by the Karnataka State Tourist Development Corporation (KSTDC). The safari consists of separate sections for herbivores like spotted dear, bears etc and carnivores like lions, white tigers and Bengal tigers.
Bannerghatta is the first biological park in India to have a fenced woody elephant sanctuary where elephants can wander about freely without chains. It is designed by elephant expert Carol Buckley and it covers an area of 122 acres. The fence is sponsored by animal rights organization People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India, which raised funds of Rs. 1 crore for its installation.
The biological park zoo houses a small museum for showcasing special exhibits, a reptile park and a small theatre.
In the year 2006, Kapil Sibal, the Union Minister of Science and Technology opened India’s first butterfly pen at the park. It occupies 7.5 acres and houses a butterfly conservatory, a museum, and an audiovisual room.
Within the conservatory, the environment has been premeditated to hold up over twenty species of butterfly. It is a humid tropical climate, with an artificial waterfall and appropriate flora to attract butterflies.
The conservatory leads to a second and third dome, which houses a museum containing dioramas and display of vigilantly preserved butterflies.