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Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary

Jessore Sloth Bear Wildlife Sanctuary, located in Gujarat, India, was declared a Wildlife sanctuary in May, 1978 A.D. The Sanctuary was primarily set up to house several species of sloth bear. It is located in Jessore on the boundary between Rajasthan and Gujarat, in India. Jessore Sloth Bear Wildlife Sanctuary exhibits a rocky and hilly topography, and it is now home to a huge range of wonderful but endangered species.

The beautiful Jessore Sloth Bear Wildlife Sanctuary, located in central Gujarat, now houses more than a thousand different species and tourists from all over the world visit the sanctuary to enjoy the flora and fauna. In a way, the sanctuary is also an important part of the local ecosystem. It continues the existing green zone of the region and extends it into the arid drylands of the state of Rajasthan, India. The wildlife sanctuary also plays an important role by conserving the existing Aravali ecosystem of the region. At present, the flourishing sanctuary separates the desert ecosystem from the surrounding desert region and the deciduous ecosystem on the fringes.

The sloth bear is now an endangered species of animal found very few parts of Asia. According to conservationists, the species was abundant in the Asian region including Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan and Bangladesh. However, rapid expansion and deforestation has resulted in dwindling numbers. Two subspecies have been recognized and are now under active conservation and they are: theIndian Sloth Bearas well as the uniqueSri Lankan Sloth Bear. The Jessore Santuary in Gujarat, India, now has the largest number of local Sloth Bear population and conservationists frequently visit the area just to assess the beautiful species.

A Little about the Sloth Bear

The Sloth bear is omnivorous and most animals are blackish brown pelt with a yellowish patch located near the chest area. Most animals have large feet and claws and they may grow up to 5–6 feet (1.5–1.8m) in size. These animals are heavy in with males ranging anywhere from 175–310 pounds (79–140kg) while non-pregnant females range from 120–210 pounds (54–95kg). Researchers estimate that the animal has a very good running speed and it can run as fast as humans can or faster. Physically, the bear has a long muzzle and they are beautiful to look at. Most of the adult bears prefer to be around the dry forest or wet rain forest area. However, a few do move towards the grass lands and live around these flatlands. As they are omnivorous, they literally eat anything including insects like termites, seasonal fruits like mangoes and papayas and even honey in the summer. The bear can easily live for 25 years as they are keen predators with very sharp hearing.

The Sanctuary is maintained primarily for the bears but birds like land birds, water birds, reptiles, snakes and crocodiles are also found in and around the sanctuary.


The sanctuary is located in the Jessore hills ofAravalli hills, to the north of the Thar Desert. The Sanctuary is about 180.66 square kilometres (69.75sqmi) at present butplans are on for an expansion to house new species.


The Sanctuary is also home to other species like the leopard,wild boar,jungle cat, civet, caracal, sambar, blue bull, porcupine, wolf and hyena. Conservationists estimate that the area is now home to more than 14 species like the Indian Flap-shelled Turtle, Muggar, Indian Python, Varanus, which are all endangered. There are varieties of bird species found in this sanctuary and more than 105 species are migratory birds. The most valuable species at present are the Grey jungle fowl,, Indian Black Ibis, White-bellied MinivetandPainted stork. the Vulnerable category areWhite-winged Black Tit,Asian Openbill,Indian White-rumped Vulture,Indian Vulture,Red-headed Vulture andRed-necked Falcon.

How to Reach

By Air

Ahmeabad airport is the closest and it is located about 190 kms away. Direct domestic and international flights are possible.

By Rail

Iqbalgadh (8 kilometers) andPalanpur(35 kilometers) are the closest stations to Ambaji town in Gujarat. You will have to catch a bus or car from the station.

By Road

Buses and private transportation is available from Idar, Ahmedabad, Palanpur (65 kms) and Mount Abu (45 kms).

Best Time to Visit

Summer is the best time to visit the area as most of the species are visible. You should know that average temperatures are around 40 degrees with hot sandy winds. In winter, temperatures may go down to about 10 to 20 degrees. We do not recommend visiting the area during the monsoons but post monsoon season till winter is ideal as temperatures are mild and almost every species is visible.

Related Image

Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary
Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary
Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary
Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary
Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary
Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary

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