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Wildlife of Kerala

Kerala’s natural bounty houses a rich wildlife. A variety of rare animals, birds and marine life in Kerala add to the uniqueness and vividness of this land. Kerala is home to a range of national parks and sanctuaries which have some of the rarest species of flora and fauna.

 

The exotic fauna found in Kerala include leopards, elephants, tigers, deer, lion-tailed macaque, monkeys, civet cats and squirrels including the Malabar giant squirrel. Woodpeckers, Malabar cormorants, darters, hornbills, kingfishers and plovers are some of the different types of birds found in Kerala. Various species of butterflies and moths are also widely found in Kerala, especially along the backwaters of Kerala.

 

The narrow curvy pathways through the tropical forests swanked with exotic flora and fauna is a perfect trekking location. The steep narrow hills and valleys that enfold sparkling waterfalls and calm lakes offer water sports such as boat rides, kayaking, rafting among others. Kerala’s wild landscape gives its visitors a chance to explore the adventurous side to you but if adventure is not your cup of tea, don’t worry, you could sit back and take the jungle safari and have the opportunity to observe Kerala’s wildlife at close quarters as possible.

Explore the Wild Side…

The Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over an area of 77 sq km and is situated at an altitude of 450-478 meters above sea level. The sanctuary is known for various species of animals such as elephants, bison, deer, wild dogs, jungle cats, tiger and wild boar among the many. Various species of snakes including cobra, viper, kraits and numerous non-poisonous snakes are also found here. Birds like fowl, myna, laughing thrush, black bulbul, peafowl, woodpecker and kingfisher form an integral part of this sanctuary. A lake covered by an enchanting canopy of tropical ever green trees is situated near by which offers boat rides to the visitors and tourists.

 

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is situated on the banks of an artificial lake, the Periyar Lake. It is the pride of Kerala and is testimony to Kerala’s artistic excellence and innovative spirit. Dense evergreen, moist deciduous forests and savannah grasslands are the highlights of this place. Herds of elephants, tigers, gaurs, lion tailed macaques and Nilgiri apes wander under the thick forests prevailing in the sanctuary.

 

Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary is full of thorny scrubs and xerophytes species. Endangered Giant Grizzled Squirrel of India is found here. Dry deciduous forests and wet grasslands along with elephants, spotted deer, various species of monkeys and peacocks bestow the Chinnar sanctuary with an unmatched uniqueness and diversity. The mixed deciduous forest is ideal for trekking.

 

Eravikulam National Park is a sanctuary for the endangered mountain goats of South India. This park is known for its beautiful rolling grasslands that spread over the Rajamalai hills and the Anamudi hills of the Himalayan range. Rare flora and fauna are found on the slopes of the hills. Nilgiri apes, the lion-tailed macaque, leopards, tigers, are some of the other rare species of fauna found here.

 

Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary is known for the rare flora and fauna of Kerala. Bonnet macaques, Nilgiri apes, lion tailed macaques, tigers, spectacled cobras, kraits, vipers, turtles, darters, little cormorants and black eagles are the types of fauna found here. Among flora, teak, neem, sandalwood and rosewood are the trees found here. Kannimari, the oldest teak is situated here. Boat cruises and trekking are also done here.

 

Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary also popularly known as the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the Western Ghats amidst the rich fauna and flora and comes under Project Elephant. One can find elephants everywhere, roving freely and if you are lucky you could also catch sight of a tiger. The wildlife tour helps you discover the sanctuary and its habitat at close quarters, the same can be done on elephant backs too.

 

Shenduruny Wildlife Sanctuary is a tropical forest located in South Kerala with a rich flora. The sanctuary gets its name from the ubiquitous 'Shenkuruny or Chenkuruny' (Gluta travancorica) trees that are found here. In the recent past archaeological investigations revealed that Shenduruny was the cradle of one of the oldest River Valley Civilizations in India, even earlier than the Indus Valley Civilization. A visit to the sanctuary gives you an opportunity to experience one of the richest floral areas of Kerala along with a few history lessons due to the recent discoveries.

 

Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary takes its name from ‘Kumarakom village’, a cluster of islands at the banks of the Vembanad Lake. The sanctuary is spread over 14 acres of lush flora that showcases a flight of vibrant migratory birds like the Siberian stork, egret, darter, heron, teal and many other rare species. Ornithologists and birdwatchers flock in between June and August, the breeding season and between November and May when migratory birds come in. ‘Waterscapes’, a backwater resort situated near the sanctuary has independent cottages built on stilts is popular among travelers who want to experience the beauty close at hand.

 

Other popular wildlife sanctuaries in Kerala include Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary and Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary in Thiruvananthapuram which are known for their dams and crystal clear streams making boat rides irresistible. Marayoor wildlife sanctuary, situated in close proximity to Rajiv Gandhi National Park, is known for its natural growth of sandalwood trees. The rich fauna of the Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary, the vibrant flora of the Konni Wildlife Sanctuary and many others situated in and around Kerala speaks volumes about the prosperity of this green-wild paradise.

 

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