N.P., Velavadar in the Bhal region of Saurashtra is a unique grassland ecosystem that has
attracted fame for the successful conservation of the blackbuck, the wolf and the lesser
found in open plains throughout the country and the state of Gujarat. Its largest
population at present occurs in Velavadar N.P. This exclusively Indian animal is perhaps
the most graceful and beautiful of its kind. It has ringed horns that have a spiral twist
of three to four turns and are up to 70 cm long. The bodys upper parts are black and
the underparts and a ring around the eyes are white. The light brown female is usually
rut (mating season) reaches a peak, one dominant male establishes dominance and its
a sight to see him strut around with its head held high with the horns almost touching its
back. After six months the mated females each bear one fawn, which are very well
camouflaged in the grasslands. The fawn joins the herd along with the mother and remains
with her for more than a year.
fastest of the Indian Antelopes, they move-off in a series amazing leaps and bounds when
threatened, and then break into a lighting run. The resultant picture is that of a
graceful and experienced dancei whose form and grace can cast a spell on the beholder.
and the jackals are the main predators in t park. Wolves here use shrub land for lying-up,
denning and for rendezvous and depend on blackbuck, hare and other small animals as their
prey. Another rare sight is that of the lesser florican who migrate here and settle here
to breed in the grasslands. After arrival, the male bird marks the territory and displays
to attract the female. The courtship display of the male is a spectacular vertical leap up
to a hight of two meters and may display over 500 times in a day! Velavadar is also an
excellent place to see a large number of harriers. The Park is very rich in other birdlife
A word of praise would not be out of place for the Kathi community, who like the Bishnoi
community of Rajasthan have protected the blackbuck with vigour and zeal, as it is
associated practices. Such communities are the real strength of wildlife protection
More than 1500 Blackbucks are found within the
Contact : Deputy
Conservator of Forests, Bhavnagar. Phone: 0278-428644.
Accomodation: Tourist Lodge at the Park. (Advance notice needed). At
Bhavnagar: Nilambagh Palace. Phone: 0278-424241. Hotel Blue Hill. Phone : 26951. Palace
Utelia, (Approx.) 75 km. Phone : 079-6445770.