Anamudi Shola National Park is located along the Western Ghats. Anamudi (2695 m), the highest peak in peninsular India, is located in this Park and Eravikulam National Park.
It is surrounded by Mathikettan Shola National Park, Eravikulam National Park, Pambadum Shola National Park, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, and the Kurinjimala Wildlife Sanctuary. (All are part of Munnar Wildlife Division).
Threats: Tourism-related construction, invasive species, severe deforestation for plantation crops like rubber, tea.
Sholas are tropical montane forests in the Western Ghats, separated by rolling grasslands in high altitudes.
They house a dense patch of stunted trees with the presence of lichen, mosses, and climbers.
The Shola patches occur only in the folds of the mountains that receive the least fog.
Eravikulam National Park
Eravikulam National Park is situated in the Kannan Devan Hills of the southern Western Ghats.
This is also the land of “Neelakurinji”, the flower that blooms once in twelve years.
The Anamudi peak is situated on the southern side of the Park.
Vegetation: High altitude grasslands and sholas.
Flora: The major part of the park is covered with rolling grasslands, but several patches of shola forests are also found in the upper part of the valley.
Fauna: The Nilgiri Tahr, Gaur, Sloth Bear, Nilgiri Langur, Tiger, Leopard, Giant Squirrel and wild dog are common.
It is regionally important as a catchment area for both east (tributaries of River Pambar) and west (tributaries of River Periyar and Chalakkudy) flowing rivers.
Locally, it is important for maintaining the climate and providing drinking water to the surrounding estates and for irrigation.
Mathikettan Shola NP
Mathikettan Shola National Park is situated in the high ranges of southern Western Ghats in Idukki district of Kerala.
It is the last remnant of the original forests of the Cardamom Hill Reserve.
The park is located between other reserve forests like Eravikulam National Park and Pampadam Shola National Park. It shares an inter-state boundary with Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
The area earmarked for the construction of the Neutrino Observatory is in Theni.
Pambadum Shola National Park
It is a part of Palani hills of Kerala and Tami Nadu.
It is situated in the eastern part of Southern Western Ghats mountain range.
Tributaries of Pambar River flows through or near Pambadum Shola National Park.
The Pambar River is a tributary of the Amaravati River, which eventually joins the larger Kaveri River.
Parambikulam Tiger Reserve
Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, which also includes the erstwhile Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, is lying in Palakkad district and Thrissur district of Kerala.
It is located in the Sungam range of hills between Anaimalai Hills (TN) andNelliampathy Hills (Kerala).
The Western Ghats, Anamalai Sub-Cluster, including all of Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, has been declared by theUNESCO World Heritage Committee as aWorld Heritage Site.
Vegetation: Evergreen, moist deciduous, and sholas.
Major Fauna: Lion-tailed macaques, Nilgiri tahr, Nilgiri langurs, Nilgiri marten, small Travancore flying squirrel.
The Tiger Reserve is the home of four different tribes of indigenous peoples including the Kadar, Malasar, Muduvar and Mala Malasar settled in six colonies.
Periyar National Park, Tiger Reserve, ER, WLS
Periyar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary (PNP) is located in the districts of Idukki and Pathanamthitta in Kerala. It is notable as an elephant reserve and a tiger reserve.
It forms the major watershed of two important rivers of Kerala, the Periyar and the Pamba. It is located in the Cardamom Hills of the Western Ghats.
It surrounds the Periyar Lake which became a reservoir in 1895 after the Mullaperiyar Dam was erected. The dam is built at the confluence of Mullayar and Periyar rivers in Kerala but is operated and maintained by Tamil Nadu.
It is home to many tribal communities including the Mannans and the Palians.
Vegetation: tropical evergreen, semi-evergreen and moist deciduous forests, montane grasslands, montane savannas, wetlands, and lake and river ecosystems.
Major Flora: Teak, rosewoods, sandalwoods, eucalyptus.
Major Fauna: Travancore flying squirrel, Nilgiri tahr, lion-tailed macaque, Salim Ali’s fruit bat, Nilgiri marten.
Silent Valley National Park is located in the Nilgiri Hills in the Malappuram district, Kerala, and Nilgiris district of Tamil Nadu. The park lies within the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve.
Bhavani River (a tributary of the Kaveri River) and Kunthipuzha River (a tributary of the Bharathappuzha River) originate in the vicinity of the park. The Kadalundi River also originates in this park.
Vegetation: Rainforests, tropical moist evergreen forest and shola forests.
Major Fauna: It is home to the largest population of lion-tailed macaques (EN). Other major fauna: Malabar giant squirrel, Nilgiri tahr, Travancore flying squirrel.
Major Avifauna: Nilgiri wood-pigeon, Malabar grey hornbill, Nilgiri flycatcher.
Threats: Livestock grazing and forest fires, illegal plantations of cannabis.
The indigenous tribal groups that live within park boundaries include Irulas, Kurumbas, Mudugas and Kattunaikkars.
Wildlife Sanctuaries of Kerala
Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary
It is located on the Western Ghats and it is contiguous with the Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary of Karnataka.
Nagarhole National Park and Tiger Reserve lies to the east of Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary.
The highest peak in this sanctuary is Katti Betta.
It is the only protected area of the West Coast Tropical Evergreen Forest of Dipterocarpus-Mesua- Palaquium type.
The river Cheenkani flows through this wildlife sanctuary.
Vegetation: Forest coast tropical evergreen and west coast semievergreen forests are predominant here.
Flora: The common trees in the semievergreen areas are Cinnamomum Zeylanicum, Hopea parviflora, Largestroemia lanceolata, Xyliaxylocarpa, Mallotus and Philippinensis.
Fauna: Deer, boar, elephant, and bison are quite common. Leopard, jungle cat and various types of squirrels are sighted here.
Chimmony Wildlife Sanctuary
Chimmini Wildlife sanctuary is located along the Western Ghats in Chalakudy taluk of Thrissur District of KeralaIt and is contiguous with Peechi-Vazhani Wildlife Sanctuary and Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary & Tiger Reserve.
The sanctuary consists of the watershed areas of Kurumali River and Mupliam rivers. Nestled in the sanctuary is Chimmony Dam built across the Chimmony river.
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the Idukki district and is contiguous with Eravikulam National Park, Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary (Anamalai Tiger Reserve & National Park) and Kodaikanal (Palani Hills).
It forms an integral part of the protected forests straddling the Kerala-Tamil Nadu border in the Anaimalai Hills.
It is under consideration for selection as UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Chinnar and Pambar rivers are the major perennial rivers in the Wildlife Sanctuary. The Chinnar River becomes the Amaravati River in Tamil Nadu.
The rare Albino gaur (Manjampatti white bison) are found only in Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary and Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary.
Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary
Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary is located in Idukki district of Kerala.
It is cradled by the Cheruthoni River (tributary of the Periyar River) and Periyar River.
It is located to the northwest of Periyar Tiger Reserve and to the southwest of Mathikettan National Park.
Cardamom Hills lie between Mathikettan National Park and Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary.
The Idukki, Cheruthoni and Kulamavu dams are located in this sanctuary.
Periyar River originates near Periyar Tiger Reserve, flows from Mullaperiyar Dam to the Idukki Reservoir, flows entirely through Kerala and joins the sea in the Kerala.
Kottiyoor Wildlife Sanctuary
Kottiyoor Wildlife Sanctuary is located in Kannur district of Kerala, in eastern hilly area of Kannur.
This wildlife sanctuary is located close to the Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary and the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala and Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary in Karnataka.