CHINNAR WILDLIFE SANCTUARY (CWS) is located 18 km north of Marayoor
on SH 17 in the
Kanthalloor panchayats of
It is under the jurisdiction of and contiguous with Eravikulam
National Park to the south. Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary is to the
north and Kodaikanal Wildlife Sanctuary is to the east. It forms an
integral part of the 1,187 km2 (458 sq mi) block of protected forests
straddling the Kerala-Tamil Nadu border in the
* 1 Geography * 2 Settlements and crops * 3 Fauna * 4 Flora * 5 Regional Cooperation * 6 Gallery * 7 References * 8 External links
CWS is located between latitude 10º15' - 10º21' N and longitude 77º5' - 77º16' E. The Munnar – Udumalpet road SH 17 passes through the sanctuary for 16 km and divides it into nearly equal portions. Average annual rainfall is only 500 mm, spread over about 48 days, because it is in the rain shadow region of the southern Western Ghats .
The altitude ranges from 400 meters (1,300 ft) at east end of the
Chinnar River to 2,522 meters (8,274 ft) at Kumarikal Malai peak.
Other major peaks in the sanctuary are Nandala Malai 2,372 meters
(7,782 ft), Kottakombu malai (2,144 meters (7,034 ft)), Vellaikal
malai (1,863 meters (6,112 ft)) and Viriyoottu malai 1,845 meters
(6,053 ft). In contrast,
The Chinnar and Pambar rivers are the major perennial water resources in the sanctuary. The Chinnar originates near Kumarikal Malai, follows the interstate boundary along the northwest edge of the sanctuary for 18 km and becomes the Amaravati River in Tamil Nadu.
Pambar River originates in the Anaimudi Hills and is joined by
seasonal rivulets and a few perennial streams originating from sholas
in the upper reaches. It traverses the Turner’s Valley in Eravikulam
National Park and flows down into the sanctuary through the Taliar
Marayoor villages and eastwards through
the sanctuary. It joins the
Chinnar River at Koottar. The Thoovanam
water falls lie deep within the sanctuary on the Pambar River. This
cascade is a major tourist attraction. The Chinnar, Pambar, Kabani and
SETTLEMENTS AND CROPS
There are 11 tribal settlements inside the Chinnar WLS, each is well demarcated by temporary stone walls. The main inhabitants are Muthuvas and Pulayars . Cultivation of maize , ragi and lemongrass is practiced in the settlements. The Mudhuvas carry out small scale ganja cultivation for their religious purposes.
Albino gaur or Manjampatti white bison. Albino bisons are very rare; this photograph is taken from Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary.
34 species of mammals live here, including many panthers and spotted
deer , 50 -60 Indian elephants , gaur , tigers , sambar deer , common
langur , bonnet macaque , Hanuman monkey , threatened
Nilgiri tahr ,
vulnerable rusty-spotted cats and about 240 of the only vulnerable
grizzled giant squirrels in Kerala. 245 species of birds including
yellow-throated bulbuls . 52 species of reptiles including 29 species
Indian star tortoise
View of Chinnar montane rain forest
There are 965 species of flowering plants in the sanctuary Ecoregions of the sanctuary comprise mostly grassland and wet grasslands vegetation and some South Western Ghats montane rain forests and high shola at the higher western elevations. South Western Ghats moist deciduous forests at mid elevations give way to dry deciduous forests and thorny scrub forests in the lower dryer eastern edges of the valley. The major xerophyticspecies in the throny scrub forests are Acacia arabica , Acacia leucofolia, Acacia concinna , Prosporis juliflora, and Opuntia stricta .
The Marayoor sandalwood forest is located here.
Senior officials of the
Ministry of Environment and Forests (India)
A regular conference of the forest ministers and forest officials of the southern states is held once a year, in rotation in each state.
Information board at Chinnar Checkpost *
Chinnar Watchtower *
River Pambar *
Thoovanam Waterfalls *