Dajipur Wildlife Sanctuary
Dajipur is best known for the Bison wildlife sanctuary and a picturesque beauty of the sanctuary a boasts of a landscape that is primarily craggy and mountainous.
Dajipur is a small village about 490 km from Mumbai on the road connecting the NH 17 and Kolhapur about 40 km from Radhanagari. It is best known for the Bison wildlife sanctuary is situated on the border shared by the Kolhapur and Sindhudurg districts of Maharashtra. The wildlife sanctuary derives its name from the splendid animal, Bison, which is found in abundance here. Situated at an altitude of approximately 1200 m above the sea level, the Dajipur Wildlife Sanctuary boasts of a landscape that is primarily craggy and mountainous. The area in which the sanctuary is situated stands dotted with dense, lush green forests.
Dajipur Wildlife Sanctuary contains tropical evergreen forests typical of the northern Western Ghats. 425 species of plants have been recorded in the sanctuary.
Indian Bison or gaur (Bos gaurus) with a population around 610 in 2004, is the flagship species of the area. Other mammals, living in the sanctuary are Indian Leopard (5), Sloth Bear, Wild Boar (80), Barking Deer (140), Mouse Deer (80), Sambar (120), Giant Squirrel 50) and Wild Dogs (70). In recent years, 6 to 12 Tigers were reported in Dajipur forest 2007-08. (anonymous reports- not yet confirmed)
Birds seen here include: vultures, eagles, Jungle fowl, Quails, Plovers, Sandpipers, Owlets, Doves, Owls, Nightjars, Kingfishers, Bee-eater, Hornbills, Woodpeckers, Bulbul, Flycatchers, Warblers, Wagtails, Sunbirds are commonly seen.
Adult male Malabar grey hornbill
This sanctuary is designated as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife International and is home to the rare and globally threatened Nilgiri wood-pigeon (Columba elphinstonii). Other species found here include the Ceylon frogmouth, yellow-browed bulbul, dusky eagle-owl and great pied hornbill and one of India’s most admired songbirds, the Malabar whistlingthrush. Two species endemic to the Western Ghats: the small sunbird and the Malabar grey hornbill have been sighted here. This sanctuary is a favorite nesting place for the speckled piculet, Malabar crested lark, and some species of Himalayan birds such as the Indian blue robin during the winter months.
Also the fact that adds to the picturesque beauty of the sanctuary is that it lies in a completely secluded environment, away from the interference and hustle-bustle of city life.
This has resulted in saving it from ruination by human activities. Located near the backwaters of the Radhanagari Dam, Dajipur Bison Sanctuary has an attractive tourist destination nearby only, known as Gagangiri Maharaja’s Math. The other major attraction of the sanctuary is a trekking trail, frequently made use of, by the adventure enthusiasts. The nearest airport from here is Belgaum, while the nearest road-link as well as railway station is Kolhapur. Hotel accommodation is also easily available here.