Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary extends over the thickly forested slopes of the 3000 ft high Dalma Mountain Range. Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary is established in 1975 with and total area of about 195 sq kms.
Close to Jamshedpur, the Dalma Sanctuary is the best elephant habitat in Jharkhand. The pachyderms love to spend their summer here. Unlike Palamau that usually reels under a scorching sun, it continues to be pleasant at Dalma with temperatures mostly under 300C. Elephants migrate to this sanctuary because of the availability of water during summer. The next best choice for getting the closest possible view of elephants is the Betla National Park, and the most appropriate time for doing this would be Feb-March.
Flora and Fauna: The steep slopes of the sanctuary provide excellent trekking opportunities and attract many trekkers throughout the year.
Another attraction within the sanctuary is a temple dedicated to Shiva, which is visited by a large number of devotees during Shivratri.
The forest offers excellent cover for its inhabitants which include elephants, barking deer, sloth bears, leopards, porcupines and tigers. Several hideouts have been identified and marked out in the sanctuary to help wildlife lovers sight the wild animals in their natural habitat.
Major Wildlife Attractions: The animals, which can be spotted in this natural sanctuary are elephants, tigers, leopards, barking deer, porcupines, sambar and sloth bears. One can experience the view the wild life in their natural habitat.
One of the boldest and biggest denizens of the jungle, gaurs prefer to remain close to elephants as they love to share the clumps pulled down by the tall tuskers. Gaurs usually move in herds except for the monsoon when they disperse and often fall prey to tigers.
The black buck, one of the fastest animals, also known for its beautiful corkscrew horns, has not been as lucky as the chital while adapting to the changing environment. Today black bucks have survived only in Bhojpur and are confined to the Kaimur Wildlife Sanctuary.
Wild dogs, often held responsible for the depredation of wildlife, are confined to Hazaribagh and Palamau sanctuaries. It is said that once a pack of wild dogs enters a forest, all wild animals, including tigers, leave it. The dogs consume sambar fawns, chitals and almost all herbivores in sight. In fact, wild dogs are despised even by hunters who hold them responsible for scaring game away.
Muggers and gharials are the two species of crocodiles found in Jharkhand. With the receding water levels of the Kosi River, the number of gharials (gavial) has greatly diminished. However, going by earlier reports from the village, numerous gharials cruise along with the floodwater and arrive at Madhepura town. Though gharials are found in the Ganges and the Gandak River, they mainly abound on the banks of the Kosi. Muggers (marsh crocodiles) have a wider distribution, as they inhabit stagnant water like jheels, reservoirs and rivers with slow currents. People at bathing ghats are always wary of these animals. The Karmanasa River in Rohtas, the Mohana River in Hazaribagh and the Bhera River near Ranchi are said to be infested with muggers. The Mutta Mugger Breeding Centre near Ranchi took off with three muggers from Jharkhand and two from Madras. Today the count has touched nearly fifty!
Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit the Sanctuary is between the months of October to June.
How to Get there:
Road: Sanctuary is about 10 km off to the Munger-Jamui state highway.
Rail: Bhagalpur Junction is the nearest Train head.
Air: The nearest airport is at Patna.
General Info / Tips:
The sanctuary provides tourist accommodation in the Tata Steel and Forest department guesthouses.
Jamshedpur (10 Kms.)
Tiger, Leopard, Elephant