Kashmir is more than a natural wonder; it is also a shelter for wildlife. Sheltering a wide range of world’s mammal species and more than 120 species of birds, Kashmir promises diverse wildlife. Varied wildlife sanctuaries and national parks in Kashmir provide brilliant option for wildlife tourism. The valley comprises of rich flora and fauna that not only impresses but also mesmerizes
Dachigam wildlife sanctuary, Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve and Overa wildlife sanctuary are three prominent spheres for wildlife protection and development in Kashmir. While Dachigam is reckoned to be home to endangered species like Hangul (Kashmir Stag), Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve, on the other side is known for sheltering endangered species like musk deer. The Overa wildlife sanctuary, spread over an area of 32.27 sq kms, shelters varied species of pheasants. A wildlife tour in Kashmir offers sight of leopard, jackal, yellow-throated marten, hill fox, Himalayan griffon, lammergeyer, long tailed blue magpie and Himalayan weasel in Dachigam Wildlife Sanctuary. Whereas, at Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve, other than Hangul and Musk deer, one can spot Serow, Leopard, Black Bear, Brown Bear, and Red Fox. At Overa Wildlife Sanctuary, one can catch the glimpse of Serow, Rhesus Macaque, Langur, Leopard and Leopard Cat. The bountiful fauna has the potential to leave one on a Kashmir wildlife tour awe-struck and mesmerized.
During the winter season, many high-altitude birds migrate to the lower valley and thus catching the eyes of the tourists. Black and yellow grosbeak, cinnamon sparrows, black bulbuls and Monal pheasants can be seen fluttering in the valley. On the other hand the remarkable summers brings back a large number of summer birds and grey Langurs along with it. The Himalayan Black Bear also wakes from its winter sleep, ready to be spotted. Wildlife tourism in Kashmir provides visitors the opportunity to understand wildlife better and connect with it.