Bhitarkanika to be closed for tourists till July 31

Bhubaneswar: The Bhitarkanika National Park in Kendrapara district would be closed for tourists from May 15 till July 31 due to the nesting season of crocodiles.

According to officials, crocodiles mate between February and April and nesting takes place in May.

Since the crocodiles tend to become violent during the nesting season, it is always advisable to stay away from these wild animals, they added. The internationally acclaimed wetland is home to about 1,600 saltwater crocodiles.

In mid April, the forest department had lifted the ban on night stay of tourists at the national park, which was imposed following attack by miscreants on forest officials in January this year.

The department has now made it mandatory for visitors and tourists to carry proof of identity necessary for securing an entry permit.