The theme of World Wildlife Day, March 3, 2017, is ‘Listen to the young voices.’ It aims to empower and engage the youth in conservation issues. The involvement of youth in wildlife conservation is high on the agenda of the United Nations. At present India has a network of 700 Protected Areas (103 National Parks, 528 Wildlife Sanctuaries, 65 Conservation Reserves and 4 Community Reserves).

There are 103 existing national parks in India covering an area of 40,500 square km, which is 1.23 per cent of the geographical area of the country (National Wildlife Database, April 2015). Below is a list of 10 of the largest national parks in the country, in descending order, and the endangered species that they house.

Snow leopard

Snow leopard, CORBIS

Hemis National Park

Covers an area of 3350 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1981

Located in Leh District of Jammu and Kashmir

Endangered species include snow leopard, bahral, Asiatic ibex and mountain weasel.


Great Indian Bustard

Desert National Park

Covers an area of 3162 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1992

Located in Barmer and Jaisalmer district of Rajasthan

Endangered species include great Indian bustard, Bengal fox and blackbuck

himalyan barbet

Great Himalayan Barbet

Gangotri National Park

Covers and area of 2390 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1989

Located in Uttarkarshi district of Uttarakhand

Endangered species include snow leopard, Himalyan barbet, Asiatic ibex and musk deer


White winged wood duck

Namdapha National Park

Covers an area of 1807 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1983

Located in Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh

Endangered species include the tiger, clouded leopard, snow leopard and white winged wood ducks.

red panda

Red Panda

Khangchendzonga National Park

Covers an area of 1784 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1977

Located in North Sikkim district of Sikkim

Endangered species include Himalayan tahr and black bear, snow leopard and red panda.



Guru Ghasidas (Sanjay) National Park

Covers an area of 1440.71sqkm

Designated as a national park in 1981

Located in Surguja and Koria districts of Chattisgarh

Endangered species include tiger, sambar deer, spotted deer and civet.


Royal Bengal Tiger

Sundarban National Park

Covers an area of 1330.10 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1984

Located in North & South Paraganas of West Bengal

Endangered species include the tiger, estuarine crocodiles and river terrapin

wild buffalo

Wild Buffalo

Indravati National Park

Covers an area of 1258.37 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1982

Located in Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh

Endangered species include wild buffalo, hill mynas, Indian bison and tigers

sloth bear

Sloth Bear

Papikonda National Park

Covers an area of 1012.86 sq km

Designated as a national park in 2008

Located in East and West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh

Endangered species include tiger, sloth bear, wild dog and leopards.

bengel fox

Bengal Fox

Kanha National Park

Covers an area of 940 sq km

Designated as a national park in 1955

Located in Mandla, Balaghat and Dindori districts of Madhya Pradesh

Endangered species include blackbuck, chital, dhole and Bengal fox

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