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Kanyakumari Wildlife Sanctuary

The virgin forests of Kanyakumari District got transferred from Kerala to Tamil Nadu on the 1st November 1956 as a result of the state reorganization. Kanyakumari Forest Division came into existence from 1st April 1977, with the headquarters at Nagercoil. Government Reserved Forests occupy an area of 50486 ha, i.e., 30.2% of the total geographic area of the Kanyakumari District.

Sambar (Cervus Unicolor)

Kanyakumari District is the southern most tip of India with Kerala on the north-west, Tirunelveli District in north-east, Arabian Sea in the south-west, Bay of Bengal in the South east and Indian Ocean in the south. Kanyakumari Forest Division is located between 77o10’-77o35’ east longitude and 8o5’ – 8o35’ north latitude

The highest point is 1829.4 m at the trijunction of Mahendragiri, Kalakad and Veerapuli Reserved Forests. Other important peaks are Mahendragiri (1645.2 m) in Mahendragiri RF, Mottaichi peak (1590.4 m) and Varaittumudi (1426.2 m)

in and Vanamuttimalai in Klamalai RFs.The valleys and flat lands between the spurs are accessible and contain valuable forests. At Muthukuzhivayal there is a plateau about 16 KM long and 10 KM wide,at an elevation of 1341 M
The forests of this Division constitute the southern tip of the Western Ghats forests. Various types of Forests from luxuriant Tropical Wet Evergreen forests to Southern Thorn Scrub forests occur in this Division because of diverse locality factors (edaphic and biotic) varying rainfall from 50 to 310 cm and elevations from Sea level upto 1829 M.

1A/C3 - Southern Hilltop Tropical Evergreen Forests
1A/C4 - West Coast Tropical Evergreen Forests
2A/C2 - West Coast Semi Evergreen Forests
3B/C1(b) - Moist Teak Forests
3B/C1(e) - Slightly Moist Teak Forests
3B/C2 - Southern Moist Mixed Deciduous Forests
5a/C1(b) - Dry Teak Forests
5A/C3 - Southern Dry Mixed Deciduous Forests
5/DS2 - Dry Savannah Forests
6A/C2 - Carnatic Umbrella thorn forests
6A/C1 - Southern Thorn Forests
6A/Ds1 - Southern Thorn Scrub
8A/C1 - Southern Sub-tropical Hill Forests
8A/E1 - Ochlandra Reed Brakes

Hill top Grasslands
Hilltop Grasslands are found in Veerapuli and Asambu Reserved Forests near Shola patches.

In precipitous localities, bordering Tirunelveli district, especially around Upper Kodayar Bentinckia conddappana, known as Hill arecanut, an interesting endemic palm occurs. Along the depressions Arenga wightii and Poanaca docksonii, two other palms, are found in plenty . The former yields a highly intoxicating toddy, which is much sought after by tribals.

Reed Brakes
Ochlandra Reed Brakes (8A/E1) form an important and characteristic forest type occurring in Veerapuli RF.

Rare and endangered plant
In the Red Data Book, the Botanical survey of India had categorized the present status of 427 Indian plants. Out of this, 123 species occur in Tamil Nadu, and as many as 62 species are endemic to Tamil Nadu. 39 of these occur in the Western Ghats.


Its number is also very much reduced by human interference by way of construction of hydel projects and large conversion of natural forests into rubber et., plantation and encroachments and private estates. Poaching and poisoning have accounted for reduction in number of animals like Tiger, Panther, Elephant, Black Buck and Deer etc., Inspite of this a considerable variety of wildlife can be seen in this division as follows.

Bonnet Macaque, Common Langur or Hanuman Langur, Nilgiri Langur, Slender Loris, Tiger, Leopard or Panther, Jungle Cat, Small Indian Civet, Mangoose, Jackal, Indian Fox, Dhole or Indian Wild Dog, Sloth Bear, Otter, Large Brown Flying Squirrel, Flying Fox, Indian Gaint Squirrel, Indian Porcupine, India Hare, Indian Elephant, Gaur or India Bison, Nilgiri Tahr, Chital or spoted Deer, Black Buck or Indian Antelope, Sambar, Barking Deer, Mousse Deer or India Chevrotain, Wild Boar, Pangolin

Cheetal (Axis)
Road: Nagerkoil / Kanniyakumari is well connected by buses.
Railway :Nagerkoil / Kanyakumari is well connected by train.
Nearest airport is Trivandrum (67KM from Nagercoil)
Tourist info

The general climate of the district is pleasant. Both the south west and north east monsoon winds, the proximity of the sea and the dwindling heights of Western ghats greatly influence the climate of this district. In Kanyakumari rainfall is distributed over four seasons. eg. (a) South west monsoon (Jun-Sep) 37.6% and 33.7 rainy days (b) north-east monsoon (Oct-Dec) 37.9% and 26.5 rainy days (c) Winter (Jan-Feb) 2.7% and 2.7 rainy days and (d) the hot wheather summer seasons 21.7% and 16.8 rainy days. In the hill region the rainfall is uniformly distributed in both monsoons and maximum rainfall occurs during October and November. On the whole this district gets an average annual rainfall of 1369.5 mm with 79.7 rainy days.

Asiatic Elephant

Phone : 04652-232205
e-mail : dfokkm@tn.nic.in & kkforestdiv@yahoo.co.in

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