Spread over 40 square kilometers, the Keibul Lamjao National Park is located in the Bishnupur District of the north Indian state of Manipur. It is the only floating Park in the world and forms to be an integral part of the Lohtak Lake, and which is characterized by many floating decomposed plant materials. This Park happens to be the natural refuge of the endangered Manipur Eld’s Deer, or the Brow-Antlered Deer, or Sangai which is also known as the Dancing Deer. A Sanctuary since 1966, it was declared as a National Park in the year 1977.
This Park is in fact a swamp, with floating mass of vegetation and biomass with soil particles which has been thickened into solid form called ‘Phumdis.’ Two-third’s to three-fourth area of the Park is formed by ‘Phumdis’ which is mostly located to the south-eastern side of the Loktak Lake. There is a waterway through the Park which provides for movement and year round transportation by boats plying through the lake to the Pabot Hill corner in the north. These swamps encompass the three hills of ‘Pabot’, ‘Toya’ and ‘Chingiao’ which provide the requisite refuge for the large mammals during the monsoon season. However, this region is too deep to be termed as ‘Marsh’ and shallow to be called a ‘Lake’.
Primarily composed of moist semi-evergreen forests, and having a rich amalgam of aquatic, wetland and terrestrial eco-system, the flag-ship fauna of the Park is undisputedly the Brow-Antlered Deer. The other species found here include the Hog Deer, Wild Boar, Large Indian Civets, Fox, Jungle Cats, Bay Bamboo Rats, Musk Shrew, Sambar and many others. A variety of fishes, amphibians and reptiles which include Tortoise, Viper, Krait, Cobra, Water-Cobra, Pythons and the Common Lizards have been found here.
Located at a distance of 53 kilometers to the south-west of Imphal, the capital city of Manipur State which is conveniently connected through road, rail and air-route with the rest of the country; regular scheduled flights are operated from Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Guwahati to Imphal.