(Last Updated on : 30-10-2013)
The Panna National Park is a renowned national park in India and is situated in Chattarpur in the state of Madhya Pradesh. The park is located about 57 kms away from the heritage site Khajuraho. The total area of the national park is 543 sq. km. and it is home to a large number of wildlife species, including some of the best ones found in India. It is also well known for being one of the best Tiger Reserves in India. The park is best known worldwide for its wild cats, including Tigers as well as deer and antelope.
The climate of the Panna National Park is tropical with the summers somewhat scorching. The best time to visit the park is between the months of January to May and summer is the best time in the park, when the visitors have the best chance to encounter the exclusive wildlife. The winters in this park are cold and comfortable and the temperature generally remains under 25°C. Monsoon touches this region in July and continues till mid-September.
The Panna National Park houses a large number of mammals, birds and reptiles species. The most notable mammals found in the park include the Tiger, Wolf, Chital, Sloth Bear, Chinkara, Sambar, Leopard, Wild Dog, Hyaena, Caracal, Nilgai, Chital, Chowsingha, Chinkara etc. The king of the jungle, Tiger roams freely in this secure, and the other smaller cats are also found in this park. The fauna of the Panna National Park is also quite rich. The park houses more than 200 species, including a host of migratory birds. Some of the prominent birds found in the park include the White Necked Stork, Bareheaded Goose, Honey Buzzard, King Vulture, Blossom Headed Parakeet, Paradise Flycatcher, Slaty Headed Scimitar Babbler, etc. The most notable reptiles species found in the Panna National Park include the Python and others.
Apart from the huge variety of animal and bird species, the Panna National Park also has rich vegetation. The dry and hot climate of the park, in union with shallow Vindhyan soils has facilitated vegetation and given rise to dry Teak and dry mixed forest. Miscellaneous dry deciduous forest inter spread with grassland areas, is the dominating vegetation type in this park. Some of the other major forest types in the park include the riverines, open grasslands, open woodlands with tall grasses and thorny woodlands. The most important floral species found in the Panna National Park include tree species like Tectona grandis, Diospyros melanoxylon, Madhuca indica, Buchnania latifolia, Anogeissus latifolia, Anogeissus pendula, Lannea coromandelica, Bosswelia serrata, etc.
The Panna National Park offers the visitors with a wonderful chance to enjoy great safaris. The park authorities offer an hour long boat ride to catch a glimpse of water predators and other animals around the lake. Apart from that, the visitors can also hire jeeps and roam around the park, on their own. Elephant safari is one of the most popular among all the safaris in this park. The night safari at Gangau is also a major attraction.