Kerala is a state on India’s Malabar Coast. It is 38,863sq km and that makes it the 21st largest Indian state. To the north and northeast is Karnataka, to the east and south is Tamil Nadu and to the west is the Lakshadweep sea. It has 14 districts and there are a number of wildlife sanctuaries and parks in Kerala making it a great place to spot the Indian hornbill bird and many other animals. It is a perfect place for wildlife lovers to plan tours and explore nature. Just some of those parks or sanctuaries are listed below and a few of the things you can look for and learn about.
Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary
Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary is surrounded by the Periyar and Cheruthoni Rivers and has a very attractive lake surrounding it perfect for nature watching, bird spotting or just a romantic outing! It has deciduous and tropical trees and numerous creatures, elephants, tigers, deer, wild boar, bison, wild dogs, different snakes, jungle cats, and many birds such as Hornbills, kingfishers, and jungle fowl and woodpeckers. If you are interested you can also visit the famous Idukki Arch Dam next door.
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
This sanctuary wraps around the Periyar Lake in the Idukki district. It was once a place the Maharajas of Travancore went hunting. Now though it is a national park and protected. You can tour the park between December and April and can enjoy seeing Leopards, elephants, monkeys, tigers, sloth bears, flying squirrels, porcupines and more. You can also find the Great Indian Hornbill bird and many other bird species.
Thattekad Bird Sanctuary
If you are looking for birds in particular there are many bird sanctuaries to choose from such as the Thattekad Bird Sanctuary. It covers 25sq km and is the first bird sanctuary in Kerela. It has been described by bird experts as one of ‘the richest bird habitats on peninsular India’. Its name translates to flat forest and consists of lost low-land forest and the longest river in Kerala, the Periyar River. More than 200 bird species can be found there including hornbills, the Malabar trogon, cuckoos, orange-headed thrush, owls, pigeons and more.
Other sanctuaries you might want to check out are;
- Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary
- Chinnar Wildlife sanctuary
- Silent Valley National Park
- Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary
- Parambikulam Wildlife sanctuary
- Eravikulam National Park
- Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary
- Muthanga Wildlife sanctuary
Just a small sampling of the fauna and flora you can see
Across all the sanctuaries and parks there is a huge range of fauna and flora you can explore. 143 species of orchids alone, 171 grass species, teak, rosewood, bamboo, maruthu, aval, karimaruthi, elavu, vembu, sandal, vaka, venteak, mazhukanjiram, neem and more. Just some of the animals, reptiles and birds are grizzled giant squirrels, civet cats, Loris, jungle cats, wild dogs, elephants, gaur, peacocks, atlas moth, macaques, bison, sambar, deer, tigers, sloth bears, leopards, wild boar, star tortoises, bears, pangolins and more.