Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary
|Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary|
The Peppara Dam was commissioned in 1983 to augment the drinking water supply to Thiruvananthapuram city and suburban areas. Considering the ecological significance of the area, it was declared a sanctuary in 1983. The area was formerly a part of the Paruthippally range of the Thiruvananthapuram Territorial Division. Forests consist of part of the Palode reserve (24 square kilometres (9.3 sq mi)) and part of Kottoor reserve (29 square kilometres (11 sq mi)). The total water spread of the reservoir is 5.82 square kilometres (2.25 sq mi). Recently, a joint effort has been made by Kerala Tourism with the State Forest Department and the Kerala Water Authority to beautify the dam site and provide more entertainment and leisure facilities here.
The Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary is situated on Thiruvanthapuram-Ponmudi Road, about 50 km northeast of Thiruvananthapuram.
The area is hilly, with elevation varying from 100 metres (330 ft) to 1,717 metres (5,633 ft). The major peaks in the sanctuary are Chemmunjimottai (1717m), Athirumalai (1594m), Arumukhamkunnu (1457m), Koviltherimalai (1313m) and Nachiyadikunnu (957m). Annual average rainfall is 2,500 millimetres (98 in). The major rivers are Karamana River and its tributaries.
Forest types include West coast tropical evergreen, Southern hilltop tropical evergreen, West coast semi-evergreen,Southern moist mixed deciduous forest, Myristica swamp forest, sub-montane hill valley swamp forest etc.
Common tree species are Terminalia paniculata, T. bellerica, Pterocarpus marsupium, Palaquium ellipticum, Mesua ferrea, Hopea parviflora, Bombax ceiba, Syzygium cummini, Lagerstroemia lanceolata, Albizia procera, Alstonia scholaris, etc.
The sanctuary has a rich population of mammalian fauna and is emerging as a big attraction to wildlife enthusiasts and ornithologists. 43 species of mammals, 233 species of birds, 46 species of reptiles, 13 species of amphibians and 27 species of fishes are reported from the sanctuary. The common mammals found are Tiger, Leopard, Sloth Bear, Elephant, Sambar (deer), Bonnet Macaque, Nilgiri Langur, Nilgiri Tahr etc.
The Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary is 44 kilometres (27 mi) by car from the nearest railway station, at Thiruvananthapuram, and 49 kilometres (30 mi) from the Thiruvananthapuram airport.
- Accommodation: - No facilities by the Department. IB of Kerala Water Authority is very near to the headquarters.
- Best season to visit: January to March
- Closure Period: Open throughout the year
- Special Attractions: Trekking to forest area – Bonafalls, Vazahuvanthole water falls, Kalarkad waterfalls, visit to settlement areas etc.
Hotel Rohini International in Vithura (Phone: 7034357336, 0471 2857336 - 38) is operating a daily package to Peppara, Vazhvanthol and Ponmudy including the guides and food . Lunch will be served within the forest itself, and that is a very good experience. especially once after you finished with the trekking. Their chefs are really good, and you can enjoy Naadan Kappa, Meen curry with other dishes. They used to arrange you the facility for the team building activities in their resort (if you opted for that)and charges are very reasonable, and their hospitality is really good and worth every penny you give them.
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