Flora and Fauna in Corbett Park
National Park has its distinct flora which comprises the fresh water Flora and alpine Flora. The prominent alpine Flora includes Sal forests, Chaurs, Khair-Sissoo forests and many more. The river plants on other hand have its own distinctive hierarchy. There are over 600 species of trees, shrubs, herbs, bamboos, grasses, climbers and ferns in the Jim Corbett National Park.
The most visible trees found in Corbett are Sal, Sissoo and Khair. Many other species that contribute to the diversity are found scattered throughout the park. (Chir) pine is the only conifer of the Park and is found on ridge-tops like ChirChoti, though at Gajar Sot, its density becomes quite low. On the elevated levels near Kanda, Banj Oak is easily seen, which is truly a Himalayan species. Prominent Palm species are Date Palm found in open and well lighted areas. Kanju (Holopteliaintegrifolia), Jamun (Syzygiumcumini) and Aamla (Emblicaofficinalis) are seen in moist areas. Other tree species comprise Bel, Kusum, Mahua and Bakli.
Jim Corbett gets its color tone from Flowering trees, which include Kachnaar (Bauhinia variegata) with pink to white flowers, Semal (Bombaxceiba) with big red blooms, Dhak or Flame-of-the-forest (Buteamonosperma) with bright orange flowers, Madaar or Indian Coral (Erythriniaindica) with scarlet red flowers and Amaltas (Cassia fistula) with bright yellow chandelier like flowers.
Artificially implanted tree species comprise Teak (Tectonagrandis), Eucalyptus, Jacaranda, Silver Oak, and Bottlebrush respectively.
There are over 70 known and registered species of grasses in Jim Corbett and inhabit different regions, especially the Chaurs. The species include Kansi, Themedaarundinacea,Baib or Bhabar, Narkul, Tiger Grass, KhusKhus, and Spear Grass with conspicuous sharp blades that sticks to clothes and easily finds entry to skin.
Male Bamboo is the prominent specie of bamboo inhabiting Jim Corbett area. The tree has clustered stout stems as well as shinning papery stem sheaths. All bamboo trees flower together and after flowering, fruiting and seed dispersal, all suffer quietus.
Shrubs dominating the Jim Corbett National Park comprise Ber, which is found in well-lit areas. Marorphali is also quite a conspicuous shrub to find in Jim Corbett. Its fruits can be seen in the form of twisted spiraling pods. Karaundais shrub which bears pinkish-white flowers and sour fruit, and quite evident under Sal. Hisar shows yellow, juicy, berry-like fruits that are relished by animals. Jhauon the other hand has high density along the Ramganga basin growing on sandy or rocky soil.
Fauna in Corbett National Park
One of the well-known species of animals inhabiting Jim Corbett is Royal Bengal tigers. It was in the forests of Jim Corbett that India’s tiger conservation program was initiated on 1st April 1973. There was a time when many man-eater tigers which dominate the Terai-Bhabar region. However, with recent decline in the population of tigers, the attacks on tigers have become quite a rare occurrence. Adult tigers could be seen as solitary wanderers to the tourists, whereas tigresses could be spotted with young cubs.
Leopards can be easily located hilly areas but can also be seen around in the low land jungles. Smaller sized feline population comprises the Jungle Cat, Fishing Cat and Leopard Cat. Other mammals inhabiting Jim Corbett National park includes deer species (Barking, Sambhar, Hogg and Chital), Sloth and Himalayan Black bears, Indian Grey Mongoose, otters, Elephants, Yellow Throat Martens, Ghoral (Goat-Antelopes), Indian Pangolins, and Langur and Rhesus Monkeys. Tourists can also spot Owls and Night Jars during the night. Local crocodiles (along the banks of Ram Ganga River) and Indian Python, King Cobra, Common Cobra could also be seen in the Jim Corbett.