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Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary

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Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in Jorhat district of Assam. It is an isolated protected area. The wildlife sanctuary is the home to India’s only gibbons- the hoolock gibbons and Northeast India’s only nocturnal primate- the Bengal slow loris. It is the only sanctuary in India named after gibbon as it contains the densest population of gibbons.

Formation

Gibbon Wildlife sanctuary is also called Hoollongapar Gibbon sanctuary named after its dominant tree species Hollong. It was once a part of the Hollongapar reserve Forest located in Jorhat.

In 1881 it was declared as a reserve forest. Earlier the forest area used to extend to the foothills of the Patkai mountain range. The area was surrounded by tea gardens and many small villages. The protected area started to shrink in 1896. The forest gradually fragmented and the reserve isolated from the foothills.

In 1924 artificial regeneration was used to develop the site’s biodiversity. During this time forests were added to the area increasing the total area.

The sanctuary was officially constituted in 1997. In 2004 Government of Assam named it the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary for containing dominant tree species Hollong.

Geography

Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary is situated at 26°40’-26°45’ north and 94°20’-94°25’ east in the eastern region of Assam. The sanctuary has an area of 20.98 sq km. It is located at an altitude between 330 and 390 feet.

The topography of the area slopes downward from southeast to northwest. Along the border of the sanctuary the Bhogoi river makes a waterlogged region which creates three habitat zones- the upslope zone, the down slope zone and the flood prone zone in the park. It extends to Dissoi Valley Reserve Forest, Dissoi Reserve Forest and Tiru Hill Reserve Forest.

Climate

The sanctuary maintains moderate temperature throughout the year. During monsoon the area receives heavy rainfall. Humidity is also very high. The sanctuary receives 249 cm of rainfall on an average every year.
 

Biodiversity

Gibbon is very rich in biodiversity. It contains a dense population of gibbons in India.

Flora

The sanctuary is classified as Assam plains alluvial semi evergreen forest. The forest has been surrounded by tea gardens. There are also canopy layers. The canopies consists of dipterocapus macrocarpus, sam, amari, sopas, bhelu, udal, hingori, nahar, bandordima, dhuna, bhomora, ful gomari, bonbogri, morhal, selling, sassi, otenga, dolu bamboo, bojal bamboo, jengu, jati bet, houka bet, tora, kaupat and sorat.

Fauna

  • Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary is home to India’s only gibbons- the Western hoolock gibbons.
  • It is the only sanctuary in India named after gibbon as it contains the densest population of gibbons.
  • The sanctuary is also home to Northeast India’s only nocturnal primate- the Bengal slow loris.
  • Other primates of the sanctuary include stump tailed macaque, Northern pig tailed macaque, Eastern Assamese macaque, rhesus macaque, capped langur. Other than the primate elephants, tigers, leopards, sambar, barking deer, wild pig,  jungle cats, wild boar, civet and squirrel are also found in the sanctuary.
  • 219 species of birds such as India pied hornbill, owl, eagle, osprey, hill myna, kalij pheasant and white winged wood duck are found in the area.
  • Several types of reptiles such as Indian python, common monitor lizard, tortoise, India tent turtle and Indian cobra are seen in the sanctuary. 

Time to visit 

The best time to visit the sanctuary is from October to February.

Accommodation

Gibbon Forest Rest House is made within the sanctuary for the convenience in stay of the tourists.

Contact

Tourists may contact the following for further information regarding the sanctuary:

Divisional Forest Officer, Jorhat Division
Tel: 0376-232008 (O)
        230456 (R)
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