National Park Area :
40 sq kms/4,000 hectares
1966 as a Sanctuary
as a National ParkLocation:
53 kilomtetres from Imphal in
Located in Manipur, Keibul Lamjao is probably the world's
only 'floating' sanctuary that comprises 40 sq. km. of wetland overgrown
with 1.5 m. deep floating vegetation (called phumdi). The park has several
distinguishing features. Apart from the vegetation and terrain, an important
highlight of the park is the Loktak Lake (6, 475 ha.), the largest
freshwater lake in India; a large portion of which falls within the park.
entire Loktak Lake was protected and declared a sanctuary in October 1953,
mainly to save the sangai or Brow Antlered Deer, which was threatened by
extinction. Following the re-discovery of the deer, in July 1954, this area
was officially notified as a sanctuary in 1966 and a decade later, on March
28, 1977, the Keibul Lamjao National Park was created.
The park remains open from October to May. The best time to see the
sangai is December - January and March - April. December and January see a
fair share of frost developing in the area. November and March afford
interesting sightings of migratory birds, and are also climatically
: By Air:
Manipur's capital, Imphal (53 km. from
the park) is connected by flight to major cities like Delhi, Guwahati (469
km), Calcutta.By Rail:
Dimapur (215 km. from Imphal) is the
nearest railhead. Jiribam, a small town on Manipur's border, 225 km. from
Imphal is an alternative, from where one can proceed to Keibul Lamjao by
Imphal is connected by road with Guwahati (469
km.) through National Highway No.39 and Silchar through National Highway No.
53. The park is about 53 km. from Manipur's capital, Imphal and can be
approached by bus or on private vehicles.
range from a maximum of 34.4ºC to a minimum of 1.7ºC. The annual
rainfall is 1220 mm. The area is most humid in August, with daily humidity
measuring as much as 81 per cent. March is the least humid at 49 per cent.
The best time to enjoy the park is between
0600 and 1000 hrs in the morning and 1530 and 1800 hrs in the afternoon.
inside the park is at Phubala where there is a Forest rest house. But all
the accommodation in an around the park is basic and in most places the food
has to be arranged by the visitor.
However Imphal (53 kms) has
hotels where one can stay and transfers for the visit are usually arranged
Keibul Lamjao consists of the unique
'phumdi' or floating marshes. Eighty per cent of the flora is submerged and
the vegetation forms a 90-120 cm. thick cover on the water surface. About
half a century ago, the predominant plants used to be tou (45 per cent),
singut (25 per cent) and khoimom (15 per cent). But the composition of the
vegetation has undergone rapid changes and the plant cover, at present, is
estimated to comprise of equal proportions of hoop Leersia hexandra and sing
kambong Zizania latifolia, a protein-rich plant, often used as food (about
24 per cent).Mammals:
Some very rare animals may be encountered in and around this wilderness.
The star attraction, of course, is the brow-antlered deer Cervus eldi eldi,
called sangai in the local Meitei dialect. This particular subspecies of the
Thamin deer is also fondly called Manipur's dancing deer because of its
delicate gait as it negotiates its way along the floating wetlands. Other
species of deer seen here include the hog deer, sambar and muntjac. One of
the most primitive primates, the slow loris occurs in scattered pockets on
the hills. Assamese and stump-tailed macaques and the Hoolock gibbon are
restricted mainly to the western hills. The Rhesus monkey is found
ubiquitously around the park. The large Indian civet Viverra zibetha and
small Indian civet Viverricula indica, common otter Lutra lutra and wild
boar Sus scrofa are some of the large mammals noted in the area.
rare lesser wild cats like the marbled cat and Temminck's golden cat may be
sighted occasionally. The Himalayan black bear and the Malayan bear may also
be seen foraging for food.Birdlife:
A variety of rare birds
occur in Keibul Lamjao and the Loktak Lake. The avifauna consists primarily
of the smaller reed-dwelling species. Waterfowl, which were unfailing winter
migrants to the lake, are becoming more rare because of the lack of open
water surfaces. The Hooded Crane may be seen in the Manipur valley. The
Black Eagle and the Shaheen Falcon are some of the raptors seen here. The
Eastern White Stork, Bamboo Partridge and Green Peafowl are also found here.
of the species of hornbills found here include the Brownbacked Hornbill,
Rufousnecked Hornbill, Wreathed Hornbill, the Pied Hornbill and the Great
Pied Hornbill.Entry Requirements
visiting Manipur are required to obtain an Inner Line Permit. Foreigners are
required to have the permits from the FRRO offices.Like the RAPs, these too
are valid for visits to Keibul Lamjao also.