Goa is home to vibrant and varied wildlife. The Sahyadri’s are an asylum for innumerable birds and animals like deer and gaurs (Indian bison), Malayan giant squirrels, monkeys, cobras and pythons, black panthers ,tigers and elephants. Goa is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts with the vibrant flora and fauna found here.
DR. SALIM ALI BIRD SANCTUARY
Goa’s only bird sanctuary, the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is situated on the western most tip of the Chorao Island on the banks of the river Mandovi. Named after India’s famed ornithologist Dr. Salim Ali, the sanctuary boasts of over 400 species of local and exotic migratory birds. Dense, fertile mangroves surrounding the sanctuary provide a nesting area for the various species of birds, insects and animals. In order to catch a glimpse of the delightful winged creatures, the permission of the Chief Wildlife Warden, Forest Department of Panaji. A rare glimpse of a crocodile, jackals or foxes is also in order during a visit to the sanctuary.
BONDLA WILDLIFE SANCTUARY
Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the abundant foothills of the Western Ghats. It houses a botanical garden, a rose garden, a sprawling deer safari park and a zoo which are major attractions for the tourists and the locals. The lush vegetation in the sanctuary consists of moist deciduous trees, evergreens and canes. The botanical garden houses a large number of exotic plants. Gaurs, panthers, leopards, deer, boars, Malabar giant squirrels, langurs and elephants are some of the animals sheltered at the Bondla sanctuary. The Nature Education Center at Bondla puts in a lot of effort in bringing nature closer to the people by organizing exhibits and screening videos on nature.
BHAGWAN MAHAVIR SANCTUARY, MOLEM
Rich in wildlife the Bhagwan Mahavir Sanctuary, Molem lies on the eastern border of Goa. The rare species of birds make it a paradise for the bird watchers. Stealthy panthers and dangerous doles (wild dogs) are a common sight at the Molem Sanctuary.
COTIGAO WILDLIFE SANCTUARY
Established to protect the forests of Goa, the Cotigao supports diverse life forms. Some of the fauna found here are the Flying Squirrel, Slender Loris, Indian Pangolin, Mouse Deer, Four-horned Antelope, Malabar Pit Viper, Hump-Nosed Pit Viper, White-bellied Woodpecker, Malabar Trogon, Velvet-fronted Nuthatch, Heart-spotted Woodpecker, Speckled Piculet, Malayan Bittern, Draco or Flying Lizard, Golden-back Gliding Snake, Sloth Bear, Wild Boars, Hyenas, Indian Bison, Rufus Woodpecker, White-eyed eagle, Malabar Crested eagle and Malabar Tree Toad.