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Katarniaghat Sanctuary: A Haven For Endangered Species

by Nimisha Tewari 09 Apr 2024

Katarniaghat Wildlife Sanctuary, located in the Terai region of Uttar Pradesh, India, stands as a sanctuary of hope for numerous endangered species facing threats of extinction. Spread across the foothills of the Himalayas, this protected area spans approximately 400 square kilometers and encompasses a diverse range of habitats, including dense forests, grasslands, wetlands and riverine ecosystems. Here's a detailed exploration of why Katarniaghat Sanctuary is considered a haven for endangered species:

Rich Biodiversity:

  • Katarniaghat Sanctuary boasts exceptional biodiversity, harboring a wide array of plant and animal species.
  • The sanctuary's varied habitats support a diverse ecosystem, from majestic apex predators to small endemic species.

Flagship Endangered Species:

  1. Bengal Tiger (Panthera tigris tigris): The Bengal tiger, India's national animal, is one of the most iconic and critically endangered species found in Katarniaghat. The sanctuary provides crucial habitat for these majestic predators, offering them protection and opportunities for breeding and dispersal. 

  2. Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis): Once widespread across the Indian subcontinent, the Indian rhinoceros now faces severe threats from poaching and habitat loss. Katarniaghat Sanctuary plays a vital role in the conservation of this vulnerable species, with efforts focused on habitat restoration and anti-poaching measures. 

  3. Gharial (Gavialis gangeticus): The critically endangered gharial, a species of crocodilian, finds sanctuary in the rivers and wetlands of Katarniaghat. These unique reptiles are specially adapted to life in freshwater habitats and are threatened by habitat degradation, pollution and accidental entanglement in fishing nets. 

  4. Swamp Deer (Rucervus duvaucelii): The vulnerable swamp deer, also known as the barasingha, is native to the Terai region of the Indian subcontinent. Katarniaghat Sanctuary provides essential habitat for these herbivores, with efforts focused on habitat management and population monitoring to ensure their survival. 

Conservation Efforts:

  • Katarniaghat Sanctuary is actively involved in conservation efforts aimed at protecting its endangered species and their habitats.
  • Conservation initiatives include habitat restoration, anti-poaching patrols, community-based conservation programs and scientific research projects aimed at understanding and mitigating threats to wildlife.

Challenges and Threats:

  • Despite conservation efforts, Katarniaghat Sanctuary faces numerous challenges and threats to its endangered species.
  • Habitat fragmentation, human-wildlife conflict, illegal poaching, and encroachment are among the primary threats that continue to jeopardize the survival of endangered species in the sanctuary.

Ecotourism Opportunities:

  • Katarniaghat Sanctuary offers opportunities for responsible ecotourism, allowing visitors to experience the sanctuary's rich biodiversity while supporting conservation efforts.
  • Ethical wildlife tourism practices, such as guided safaris and nature walks, provide visitors with the chance to observe endangered species in their natural habitat while minimizing disturbance to wildlife.


  • Katarniaghat Sanctuary serves as a beacon of hope for endangered species, offering them refuge and protection in a rapidly changing world.
  • Through collective conservation efforts and sustainable management practices, Katarniaghat continues to play a crucial role in preserving India's natural heritage and safeguarding the future of its endangered species.
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