The Keibul Lamjao National Park is located in the Bishnupur district of the state of Manipur in India. This national park is regarded as ‘’the world’s only floating park in the world’’. Spread within the range of 40 sq. kms, this breathtaking place is located in the North Eastern part of India. It is an integral part of
Loktak lake which is the largest freshwater of India.
Fauna or the animals found in this region:
The Keibul Lamjao National Park is home to several species of deer. The most significant deer among them is the Brow – antlered Deer which forms the major fauna of this region. This deer is also known as the Eld’s deer. It is regarde as the Manipur’s state animal.
In the 1950s, it was believed that the Eld’s deer had gone extinct. Surprisingly, it was rediscovered in Manipur. Sadly, by the year 1975 only a dozen or so animals remained in this area. These animals were found on the floating marsh called ‘’phumdis’’ in Manipur’s Loktak Lake. This lake has been declared as the Ramsar site according to the Ramsar convention act.
These marshy areas are continuously below the water level and they provide many recreational activities. Based on this, the marshland located on the southern end of the lake was marked and named as Keibul Lamjao National Park. In 1966, it was initially declared as a wildlife sanctuary. Subsequently in the year 1977, it came to be declared as the national park. Though, the exact numbers of deer in the park is not known, it is assumed to be at least a hundred today. These animals are in a verge of extinction here, they are faced with several threats to their habitats and themselves.
The Brow – antlered deer or dancing deer or Eld’s deer or the Sangai is an Endangered species according to IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature).
Disappearing fauna – Reasons
There are many reasons but most of them are related to the development activities of human. The reasons to be considered are :
1) Poaching: Poaching is an illegal activity, these animals are hunted and killed for the purpose of meat largely by the locals here.
2) Overfishing: Fish also forms the fauna here, area characterized by the surrounding water is a livelihood for several fishermen. But sometimes, overfishing can lead to disruption in marine food chain.
3) This habitat is shrinking due to continuous flooding by high water caused by artificial reservoir of the National Hydroelectric Power Plant, Loktak.
Flora or plants of this region:
The National park is characterized by several floating decomposed plants locally called ‘’phumdis’’ on above which these animals reside. It is a floating mass of entangled vegetation formed by the accumulation of organic debris and biomass with soil.
There are also threats to these flora due to invasive alien plant species. Scientists are experimenting by using these flora to make energy.
Sanghai Tourism Festival:
The Sanghai festival is celebrated annually in the North Eastern state of Manipur. The ‘’Manipur Sanghai festival’’ is celebrated every year from 21st to 30th November.
It is the grandest festival of the state named after the state animal Sanghai, which is the critically endangered animal found only in the Manipur state, mostly in the Keibul Lamjao National Park.
The festival here is highly accompanied by the fusion of the state artistic culture and dance. The classical dance ‘’Rasleela’’ is an important part of the dance form in this festival.
If you are in a mood to travel just grab the bag and get off to the Lamjao National Park!
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