Keoladeo National Park (1985)

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This former duck-hunting reserve of the Maharajas is one of the major wintering areas for large numbers of aquatic birds from Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, China and Siberia. Some 364 species of birds, including the rare Siberian crane, have been recorded in the park. 

India 1975. Western Tragopan [Tragopan melanocephalus].

It is one of the most colourful of the four species of tragopan or Horned Pheasant that inhabits the Himalayas at altitudes ranging from 1300 metres in winter to 3500 metres, in summer. The brilliantly plumaged cock tragopans have two long brightly coloured fleshy horns one above each side, which are erected during courtship. A brightly coloured wattle or 'bib' of naked skin adorns its throat and is also expanded at the same time. The specie depicted here is distinguished from the other three by its white-spotted black underparts. The hen is a soberly clad brown bird with white streaks in her upper plumage. Tragopans are highly prized by sportsmen and hunting and trapping has reduced their numbers to the verge of extinction in some areas. Therefore, all tragopan species have now been officially placed on the list of endangered species in India and are totally protected by law. This species is vulnerable
  • India 1975. Western Tragopan [Tragopan melanocephalus]. 

The male, though rather heavily built and dumpy, is distinguished by his highly refulgent metallic black plumage. This makes the Monal one of the most spectacular pheasants. In marked contrast, the hen is a plain-looking mottled brown bird with a short tuft on the head and white throat. 

This pheasant is found throughout the Himalayan ranges at altitudes of 500 to 2500 metres. He has powerful legs and stout curved bills with which it digs vigorously for its food of roots and tubers, often in deep snow. The male has a wild ringing whistling call. As with the Trapogan, trapping has depleted its numbers in many of its habitats to an alarming extent, and the bird is now strictly protected by the game laws of most Himalayan States. This species is vulnerable

  • India 1975. Himalayan Monal [Lopliophorus Impejamus].  

India 1975. Himalayan Monal [Lopliophorus Impejamus].

India 2000. Souvenir Sheet from INDEPEX ASIANA 2000.
Migratory Birds

India 2000. Souvenir Sheet from INDEPEX ASIANA 2000.  1) Rosy Starling [Pastor Roseus].  2) Garganey [Anas Querquedula].  3) Forest Wagtail [Dendronanthus Indicus].  4)  White Stork [Ciconia Ciconia].

India 1985. White-winged wood duck [Cairina Scutulata].

The White Winged Wood Duck is essentially a resident of the dense tropical evergreen forest. 

It prefers to live in inaccessible swampy areas formed by numerous rivers, streams, crocks etc. 

This duck is generally found in pairs or in small parties of four to six, though parties of more than 10 are also recorded. 

It is a shade loving bird keeping most of the day in secluded jungle pools, occasionally perching on the trees during the day. 

  • India 1985. White-winged wood duck [Cairina Scutulata]. 

Believed to have existed on this planet for over one million years, the Siberian Crane (Grus leueogeranus) sometimes called ‘The Lily of Birds’ in India and the ‘Snow Wreath’ in the Soviet Union, is one of the most endangered birds in the world. Of the 15 crane species left in the world, 5 can be seen in India; the Common Crane, the delicate Demoiselle Crane, the rare Black-necked Crane, the well known non-migratory Indian Sarus and Siberian. Less than 200 Siberian Cranes now exist, their numbers depleted by the disappearance of wetlands in Asia and by hunting. Nesting in the Tundra region of the Arctic in the Soviet Union, a small flock continues to migrate to India flying 6500 kms. to winter in Keoladeo National Park at Bharatpur (Rajasthan). During the winter of 1981-82, 38 birds were counted at Bharatpur. The rest migrate to China and Iran. 

  • India 1983. Siberian Crane [Grus Leucogeranus]. 

India 1983. Siberian Crane [Grus Leucogeranus].

Keoladeo National Park is located in Bharatpur, Rajastan, and is one of the most spectacular water-bird sanctuaries in the world which offers a magnificent display of indigenous breeding birds and winter migrants. The sub-tropical climate in the sanctuary together with its extensive aquatic vegetation and profusion of trees provide ideal conditions for nesting. Soon after the south-west Monsoon, Indian water- birds like cormorants, darters (snake- birds), spoonbills, white ibises egrets, the grey heron, the painted stork, the open- billed stork begin to nest usually in congested, mixed colonies, on trees partly submerged in water. The nesting colonies are mainly sited in the hundreds of acacia (babul) trees that, dot the marsh. 

Sources and links: 

Other World Heritage Sites in India (on this website). Inactive links are not described on postage stamps. Please refer to the UNESCO-listing, India-section, for further information on the individual properties. 


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Revised 21 jul 2006  
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