The Indian peninsula is a continent in itself, whose geographical diversity has encouraged the flourishing of a whole range of wildlife with over 350 species of mammals and 1200 species of birds in the country. Two of India's most impressive animals, the Bengal/Indian Tiger and the Asiatic Elephant are found in most regions, The tiger originated in Central Asia and migrated over the great Himalayas to the dense tropical forests, adapting itself well to the plains. A herd of elephants in the wild is a breathtaking sight. These huge mammals are respected by all animals, including the Tiger. Widely distributed throughout India, the Indian Elephant is slightly smaller than its African counterpart. Generally, only the males have tusks. Today, most of India's wildlife finds refuge in over two hundred sanctuaries and parks around the country.