There can be no desert imaginable without the mascot of the sands, the camel. Throughout our lives, we’ve been taught of these animals’ hardiness and perseverance. India’s Dromedary camels are a signature aspect of Rajasthani culture, with 85% of the country’s wild camel population belonging to this vibrant state leading the state government to declare the camel as their state animal in 2014.
So what do we know about the dromedary camels and their association with the people of Rajasthan?
Probably the most well-known fact of any camel is that they can go for long periods of time without the need for water and nutrition. Even through a normal day, camels lose up to 30% of their water content, which they have successfully adapted to. When they do have the opportunity, they forage on desert shrubs and plants, converting some of that energy into fat in the hump to be used for later. Another fun, lesser-known aspect of dromedary camels is that they can voluntarily close their nostrils to aid in water conservation; the hot desert air does not enter, thereby keeping the throat and body sufficiently hydrated: Something to watch out for on a desert camel safari!
Camels are social animals and live in groups of up to 20 individuals. The groups primarily consist of females, that are led by one male. On a desert safari in Jaisalmer, it’s not uncommon to see a herd of camels trodding across the dunes!
Dromedary camels are also said to have quite a few sentient qualities. They can remember their original homes, and display their own set of likes and dislikes. They are also usually vocal beings, using a series of grunts and whistles to communicate. During the breeding seasons (in the monsoon), the individual herds may group together, forming massive migratory herds in the hundreds.
The people of Rajasthan have always had a relationship with the camel. Most camel herders in the region believe that Shiva put the responsibility of taking care of these camels on their shoulders, and it is a responsibility that they carry out to this day. The tradition of camel herding itself is known to be as old as 600 years. Camels were an essential means of transportation and dairy products for the nomads when they moved about in the desert. Once a year, the Pushkar fair takes place during post-monsoon and early winter months, where camel fairs are a sight to be experienced.
Camels are definitely the best way to experience a desert safari in Jaisalmer. If you were ever contemplating about the various things to do in Jaisalmer, consider staying with Manvar Luxury Camps, where we offer an exclusive desert safari experience on camelback!
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Milestone 110 from Jodhpur to Jaisalmer, NH125, Khiyasariya, Rajasthan 342025