|A Corbett Sunset over the Kalagarh Reservoir|
The Crocs of the Ramganga
The Ramganga River flows through Corbett Tiger Reserve dividing the park in half. It is the lifeline of Corbett Tiger Reserve providing a perennial water source for wildlife in the area. A number of rivulets feed the Ramganga inside the park. Some well – known ones are Dhulwa Sot, Kothidunga Sot and Gorkha Sot to name a few. The Mandal, Palain and Sonanadi Rivers are the main tributaries of the Ramganga in Corbett Tiger Reserve.
The Ramganga River was dammed in 1974 by an earthern dam known as the Kalagarh Dam at the southern periphery of the park leading to the formation of a reservoir of approximately 84 sq. km. known as the Kalagarh Reservoir. The dynamics of this reservoir is not well understood but aquatic fauna have seem to like the new environs of this Himalayan River and its reservoir.
The Ramganga River meets the Kalagarh Reservoir at the Dhikala grasslands. The grasslands remain submerged for a few months after the monsoon and once dam gates are opened waters recede exposing sand and mudflats which are soon colonized by various grasses and plants.
The Ramganga River upstream of Dhikala is characterized by banks with river stones and a few sandy stretches. An unusual environment for crocs but it is home to Gharial, Mugger and Freshwater Turtles. The Crocodile Point on the Ramganga River is a good place for park visitors to observe a small population of the Ramganga Crocs spending hours basking in winter months. The adult male is quite large and there are a few females and sub-adult gharial here to alongwith the occasional mugger. Fish in the Ramganga is plentiful including the Mighty Mahseer and the Goonch.