Buxa in 1866, the Forest Department first took charge of these forests and the Buxa Tiger Reserve was established under project Tiger in February 1983. The area was demarcated into core and buffer zone only in 1986 and it wasn’t until 1992, when it was declared a National Park that the areas were brought under the administrative control of the Field Director. Buxa has an area of 745 sq km ,the largest forest in North Bengal and has the second highest tiger population in West Bengal after sunderbans,
The numerous vegetation patterns comprising evergreen, wet mixed deciduous foreses, and hill tracts complemented by riverine forests encompass a variety of animals. About 67 mammal species are reported to thrive in the reserve including 21 endangered species. The Bengal Tiger Panthera tigers is clearly the apex species of Buxa. Leopard Panthera pardus, clouded leopard Neofelis nebulosa may also be occasionally seen by a lucky few. Indian civet Viverridae , sloth bear Melusus ursinus, wild boar sus scrofa and the Yellow throated Marten also reside in these forests. Gaur Bos gaurus, chital Cervus axis, sambar Cervus unicolor and the muntjac Muntiacus muntijac comprise the prey species. The Asian elephant Elephas maximus is believed to migrate between those forests and those in Bhutan. The Rhesus macaque Macacu mulatta, common langur Presbytis entellus, civets Viverridae spp and porcupine Hystrix spp are other mammalian species. The Malayan Giant Squirrel, blacknaped hare, flying squirrel, the mongoose and a huge population of bats and rats are some of the smaller inhabitants of those forests.
36 special of reptiles including 10 endangered species are known to exist in the reserve. Pythons, the Indian cobra, kraits, vipers, monitor lizards and tortoises represent the reptilian population. The Chinese Pangolin and the reticulated regal python are endemic to the Buxa forests. Mahseer Barbus putitora are prominent fish that are found in abundance in the rivers.
Over 230 avian species have been identified, which include migrant as well as resident species. The peafowl Pavo cristatus, Red Jungle Fowl Gallus gallus and the Great Hornbill Buceros bicornis are prominent species. The Sparrow hawk and Whit- eyed Buzzard Eagle are some of the raptors the occur here. Woodpeckers, larks, pipits, pitas, wagtails, warblers, the Fairy Bluebird, ioras, munias and finches are often sighted in these parts. Egrets, storks, goosanders from the Himalayas, forktails, redstars and wagtails are found near the rivers. The magnificent Black Stork is another fascinating winter migrant. During the summer, the rare Ashy Minivet may make an appearance and as the rain clouds vanish, several other minivets and Sultan tits may be sighted.
Eastern alluvial secondary semi-evergreen forests occur close to the streams that flow in the plains. Aesculus panduana, Eugenia Formosa and Dillenia pentagyna are typical trees found here. Sal Shorea robusta trees grow in abundance in the moist forests where Sterculia villosa, Duabanga sonneretioides, Tetrameles nudiflora and Terminalia myriocarpa also grow. Dalbergia sissoo and Acacia catechu are most common in the silt deposits on the riverbeds. At higher altitudes, the moist soil supports Narenga porphyrocoma. Trees like Albizzia procera, Salmalia malabarica, Syzygium cerasoides, Randia dumentorum and Butea monosperma also grow in the moist areas.
In the fertile riverine areas, the savanna- type vegetation is dominant.
The eastern terai sal forests support on ill-drained soils the machilus and Phoebe species, besides sal
East Himalayan moist mixed deciduous forests consist of Schima wallichii and Lagestroemia parviflora. Shorea robusta , Careya arborea , Dillenia pentagyna , Syzgium.
Cerasideum and salmalia malabarica are fire-resistant species that gradually take over the savanna vegetation forming mixed deciduous forests. Moist sal savannah forests have Careya and Palas trees apart from sal. Tail grasses like Phragmites karka, Saccharum procerum, S. Spontaneum, Erianthus
elephantinus and Anthistiria gigantean grow in dense pockets. Saccharum arundinaceum, Cymbogon nardus and imperata cylindrical are other grasses found in the reserve. Khair and sissoo with kush grass grow on the fresh sand banks on river beds. Premna simul and sidha are some of the first to appear.
Secondary dry deciduoud forests consist of sal trees alongwith Tetrameles, Lagerstroemia and Terminalia belerica.
East Himalayan subtropical wet hill forests are found in the hills. Dendrocalamus hamiltonii, Acrocarpus fraxinfolius and Phoebe lanceolata occur in the lower reaches. At altitudes above 900 m., Castanopsis, Alnus, Betula spp. Are found along with various types of bamboo.
East Himalayan subtropical wet hill forests are found in the hills. Dendrocalamus hamiltonii, Acrocarpus fraxinifolius and Phoebe lanceolata occur in the lower reaches. At altitudes above 900 m., Castanopsis, Alnus, Betula spp. are found along with various types of bamboo.
Rajabhatkhawa is the getway of Buxa Tiger reserve or Buxa National Park. Rajabhatkhawa is a favorite accommodation place for Wildlife lovers.
How to Reach:
By Air :The nearest airport is Bagdogra which is about 210 km.
By Train :One can land in New Jalpaiguri(NJP) railway station and drive down to the park.
By Road : The Reserve is reached via NH31
Best time to visit Buxa National Park:
Mid November and April :The tiger spotting occur from April to mid-May just before the onset of Monsoon. The reserve is however open from the 15th of September and closes by the 15th if June.