Nature in our backyard

The Bannerghata Nature Camp offers rest for the stressed out and close view of wild animals for nature lovers.

The Bannerghata Nature Camp is ideal for a short break, especially if you don’t want to drive out too far from the city.

The pond in front of the Bannerghata Nature Camp

Long time Bangalore residents may remember this road past IIM Bangalore as a pot-holed drive into a fairly verdant area. Now it is a concrete mess right up-to the zoo. The resort is situated a few kilometres beyond the zoo, and we parked the car near the Jungle Lodges’ new restaurant and were driven inside in the camp’s vehicles.

The resort itself consists of a half a dozen tents, two log huts in addition to the dining area, office etc. Strategically placed hammocks tempt one to blissful afternoon naps.

Minchu, the resident Sambhar

A walk through the resort introduced me to the resident antlers. Two spotted deer (survivors of a crocodile attack) and a rowdy sambhar named Minchu feel at home there. Minchu used to live in the premises of a local Bangalore women’s college, where he was apparently tortured by the students. So he is prone to attack women attired in green.

After a fairly unremarkable lunch, we were bundled into a safari bus which drove us through the tiger and bear sanctuary. We saw lion, deer, bear lounging slothfully in the afternoon heat. The observation point offered a panoramic view of the park. The drive ended with a visit to the zoo, which was full of the summer holiday crowd.

I was dragged around by my son for the rest of the hour. I was glad to get back to the resort where beer and a nice lunch served as a good preamble to a nice snooze.

Highlight of the trip

Next morning, we were woken up at 6:30 am for the trek through the jungle. Luckily none of the other guests seemed interested in exerting themselves so early in the day and it was a personalized tour. The two to three kilometre trek runs through the herbivore safari area.

White Tiger at Bannerghata Safari

White tiger at the safari

We were treated to interesting wildlife gyan and anecdotes. What’s the difference between antelopes and antlers? Look at the dung/dropping and try to guess which animal was responsible…

The first sight was of the last three surviving black bucks in the sanctuary. The sanctuary once boasted of 25 bucks, but with innumerable leopard attacks the number has dwindled to three. Thankfully there are no actors with penchant for hunting in this area.

Further down we were able to sight a herd of bisons. Birds of many a feather flew by, followed by a brief lecture on habits and habitats.

The carnivore safari numbers have been augmented significantly by circus animals. Regaled by stories of wild elephants, most notably the infamous Rowdy Ranga (which periodically comes to court the tame female elephants inside the sanctuary), we kept trudging through the forest area.

We finally spotted a disdainful chameleon hiding in the trees and got quite close enough much to the lizard’s consternation.


A final bend on the trail brought the camp in sight and we passed a muddy pond, which was the haunt of the crocodile that attacked the deer. The walking tour was a great way to end the holiday.

Though the program was complete, what strikes you is the thin membrane that separates the beautiful reserve forest from the din of civilization right outside. Refreshed, we drove out with a new chapter in the family album.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Similar Story

Study shows TNPCB ill-equipped to monitor the environmental impact of pollution

The scientific team of TNPCB is working at half its strength, affecting the Board's ability to carry out inspections in Chennai and other parts of the State.

The Central Pollution Control Board and the State Pollution Control Boards are the primary custodians for preventing and controlling all forms of pollution in our country. Despite their significant role in environmental protection, the public is mostly unaware of the functions of these regulatory bodies, due to insufficient research. Therefore, we at Citizen consumer & civic Action Group (CAG) have attempted to understand the functions of the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB), through a study titled β€˜The Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board in Retrospect: An Examination of Selected Parameters from 2017 to 2022.’ Read more: Fisherfolk lament as environmental…

Similar Story

Why the national programme for clean air failed a gasping Mumbai

Mumbai has seen an alarming decline in air quality. A look at the limited impact of the National Clean Air Programme on mitigating pollution.

October 2023 was a shocker for Mumbai. The coastal city has historically recorded lower AQI levels as compared to Delhi, which is notorious for its poor air quality. But the tables turned in October 2023, with AQI in Mumbai reaching dangerously high levels of up to 300, surpassing Delhi for several days. This led to a slew of respiratory ailments, more so among the vulnerable populations. PM2.5 levels have, in fact, seen a consistent increase in Mumbai over the past three years. Dr Jui Mandke, a paediatric surgeon practising in Mumbai, says, β€œIn October 2023, we encountered the maximum number…