Forest of Pench National Park inspired Rudyard Kipling for “The Jungle Book” and is popularly known as Mowgli land. Pench Tiger Reserve derived its name from the Pench river, which originates from Mahadeo hills and flows from north to south, through the Pench National Park covering a distance of 24 km. Pench National Park is situated on the southern slope of the Satpura-Maikal landscape. It is located in Seoni and Chhindwara districts in the southern part of the state of Madhya Pradesh in India. It is spread across two Indian states of Madhya Pradesh with core zones Touria, Karmajhiri & Jhanmtara, and at the tip of the northeastern corner of Maharastra with two zones available for safari: Khursapar and Sillari. The main forest type of the area is the Southern Tropical Dry Deciduous Forest.
The vegetation of Pench National Park is classified as south Indian moist deciduous in Madhya Pradesh and southern tropical moist deciduous forests in Maharastra. The prominent trees species found here are Teak (Tectona grandis) and its associates, namely Terminalia bellirica, Diospyros melanoxylon, Madhuca longifolia, Aegle marmelos, Terminalia arjuna, Cassia fistula, bamboo species. Pench National Park of Madhya Pradesh is connected to Kanha National Park, via the Kanha-Pench corridor. In addition, this reserve is connected to Nawegaon-Nagzira Tiger Reserve via Nagpur and Bhandara forest divisions. Hence, this large forested tract is of immense conservation value as it allows dispersal and maintenance of the genetic diversity of tigers and other mammals. Here’s a list of the Top 5 reasons to visit Pench National Park.
1. Experience “The Jungle Book” in reality
Pench National park is one place where all the characters of Rudyard Kipling’s “The Jungle Book” come to life. Get a chance to spot Baloo, Bagheera, Shere Khan, Kaa, the gang of Akela a, and Langurs in the teak forests, rolling hills, huge rock caves, dense vines, and beautiful streams, and vast meadows in Pench. With the recent sighting of the Black Leopard or Melanistic leopard in the jungles of Pench National Park further completes all the characters of The Jungle Book.
2. Growing Tiger Population
Pench National Park is a great choice for Tiger Safari in India. There are more than 50 tigers in both states of Madhya Pradesh and Maharastra within the tiger reserve area and more than 80 utilizing the Pench Tiger Reserve. Pench National Park is famous for Tigeress ‘Collarwali Tigress’ a.k.a “Mataram” a.k.a T-15. She was featured in the BBC documentary “Spy in the Jungle” and a record holder for most no. of litter by a single tigress. She is also one of the major contributors to the striving population of Tigers today in Pench National Park.
3. Plethora of Wildlife
Pench National Park has 39 species of mammals such as gaur (Bos gaurus), sambar (Rusa unicolor), chital (Axis axis), wild boar (Sus scrofa), barking deer (Muntiacus vaginalis), four-horned antelope (Tetracerus quadricornis), chinkara (Gazella bennettii), tiger (Panthera tigris), leopard (Panthera pardus), sloth bear (Melursus ursinus), wild dog (Cuon alpinus), the grey wolf (Canis lupus), striped hyena (Hyaena hyaena), and golden jackal (Canis aureus). Pench is also rich in birdlife with a total of 269 species identified here. The Pench reservoir, spread over 5,000 ha, is a major attraction to migratory waterfowl, and the dead trees scattered amidst the reservoir are good nesting sites for cormorants, egrets, herons, and storks. White-necked Stork (Ciconia episcopus), Painted Stork (Mycteria leucocephala), Asian Openbill (Anastomus oscitans), White Ibis or Black-headed Ibis (Threskiornis melanocephalus), and Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea) are some of the birds that breed around the reservoir.
4. Option of Night Safari at Pench National Park
In addition to the regular morning and afternoon safari, another thrilling experience to explore the forest of Pench National Park is the night safari in the buffer area. The sounds of Owls, Nightjars, and hearing an alarm call at night is a breathtaking experience with the possibility of Tigers, wolves, or foxes. It’s also a great opportunity to spot Porcupines and Pangolins.
5. Well connected
Pench National Park is well connected to the Nagpur airport and railway station with just a two-hour drive. Nagpur has good connectivity to flights from New Delhi, Mumbai, and Bangalore. It’s also can be clubbed with other National Parks such as Tadoba in Maharastra and Kanha in Madhya Pradesh.