About Periyar Wildlife SanctuaryÂ
Periyar Tiger Reserve (PTR) is situated in the Cardamom Hills and Pandalam Hils of the Southern Western Ghats of peninsular India. The major portion of the Reserve forms the catchment of the river Periyar and the rest that of river Pamba. Administratively, PTR falls in Idukki, Kottayam and Pathanamthitta districts of Kerala state. The reserve is divided into two functional divisions, each managed by a Deputy Director. Periyar East is the larger division with an area of 707 sq.km and headquartered at Thekkady, where most of the tourism activities are centred. This Division is divided into three Ranges - Thekkady, Periyar and Vallakkadavu.
Periyar West division (218 sq.km) has its headquarters at Peermedu and is divided into two Ranges, Azhutha and Pamba. Each Range under a Range Officer is further divided into Sections and Beats, looked after by Foresters and Forest Guards respectively.
Set high in the ranges of the Western Ghats, in Godâ€™s Own Country, Kerala, is the Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve. Periyar wildlife sanctuary has a picturesque lake at the heart of the sanctuary. Formed with the building of a dam in 1895, this reservoir meanders around the contours of the wooded hills, providing a permanent source of water for the local wildlife. Though its a Tiger Reserve, tourists come here to view the Indian elephants in the act of ablution and playfulness by the Periyar lake.
Major Wildlife Attractions in Periyar National Park
Apart from Elephants, the other animals to be seen in the Periyar sanctuary are Gaur, Wild Pigs, Sambar, Barking Deer, Mouse Deer, Dole or Indian Wild Dog and very rarely, a Tiger. There are, now, an estimated 40 tigers here. Four species of primates are found at Periyar - the rare lion-tailed macaque, the Nilgiri Langur, Common Langur And Bonnet Macaque. Periyar also happens to be the habitat of the elusive Nilgiri Tahr, which is rarely to be seen.
The birdlife comprises of Darters, Cormorants, Kingfishers, the great Malabar Hornbill and racket-tailed Drongoes. The reptilian population boasts Of Monitor Lizards that can be spotted basking in the sun, on the rocks along the lakeshore. Visitors who trek into the Periyar national park often see a Python and sometimes even a King Cobra