Gir National Park

The Gir Forest in Gujarat is famous worldwide due to its commendable conservation of Royal Asiatic Lions. Wild lovers from every corner of the nation and foreigners visit here every year to take the delight of Gir National Park.

People go to the Gir Safari booking to witness Royal Asiatic lions roaming inside their habitat, but the place is also ideal for reptile enthusiasts. The dam area in the Gir Forest map contains numbers of crocodiles. Moreover, the wildlife sanctuary is home to numerous venomous and non-venomous varieties of snakes. Some venomous snakes found here include Common Krait, Indian Cobra, Russell’s viper, and Saw-Scaled Viper. The Indian Rock Python is an anti-venomous snake seen in the core area of the Gir National Park.

When it comes to the reptiles, we can recall a hurtful incident that took place at Sasan Gir National Park in April 2020. An Asiatic Lion passed away in Jasadhar range of the Gir (East) wildlife division in Amreli district after being bitten by a venomous snake. The lion, believed to be 13 to 15 years of age, was found dead in Savajiyu Neru Forest Area, situated in a Tulsishyam round of the Jasadhar Range by a forest staff team were on their routine patrolling. Later, the forest officials arranged to take the carcass of the poor big cat to the animal care center in the Gir Forest premises for a postmortem.

The vet doctors at Gir National Park found cut marks caused by snakebite on the dead lion’s nose. Further autopsy procedures were carried on, which revealed that the lion died because of massive internal bleeding. “Veterinarians observed marks of snakebites on the nose of the lion. Further autopsy procedure revealed that the animal had died due to internal bleeding. This established that the lion died due to snake bite”, said Dushyant Vasavada, the Chief Conservator of Forests of Junagadh Wildlife circle.

According to the forest officials at Gir Wildlife Sanctuary, the dead lion could have been bitten by a snake of the viper wiper family, which spews haemotoxic venom. Snakes of the viper wiper family found in Gir Forest premises are Saw-Scaled Viper and Russell’s viper. These species are incredibly venomous; once their venom enters the bloodstream of a victim’s body, it can lead the victim to bleed; in the worst case, it can even lead to death.