Natural vegetation and wildlife of Andhra Pradesh
Due to its geographic location, the state of Andhra Pradesh is considered one of the rich biodiversity states in India. Natural vegetation (flora) and animal life (fauna) depend mainly on climate, relief, and soil. Krishna and Godavari are the two largest rivers flowing through the state. The Andhra Pradesh Forest Department deals with protection, conservation and management of forests.
The total forest cover of Andhra Pradesh is 22,862 km2. The Eastern Ghats region is home to dense tropical forests, while the vegetation becomes sparse as the Ghats give way to the Deccan Plateau, where shrub vegetation is more common.
The varied diversity of fauna includes tigers, panthers, hyenas, black bucks, cheetals, sambars, and sea turtles. The dense forests in mountains offers habitat to the wildlife. The state government declared certain areas as wildlife sanctuaries and national parks.
National parks and zoo parks
Indira Gandhi Zoological Park is located in Visakhapatnam. It is one of the largest zoos of India, spread over an area of 625 acres (253 ha). It was named after Indira Gandhi, the former Prime Minister of India and was opened in 1977. There are eighty species with 800 animals. Hippopotamus and crocodiles are the special animals conserved.
Kambalakonda Wildlife Sanctuary is situated on NH 5, surrounded by the Eastern Ghats on three sides and the Bay of Bengal on the fourth. It houses Indira Gandhi Zoological Park. The park has almost eighty species with primates, carnivores, mammals, ungulates, reptiles and birds. These include rhesus monkeys, baboons, panthers, tigers, wolves, hyenas, pythons, tortoises, monitor lizards, elephant, bison, sambar deer, peacocks, ducks and macaws.
Papikonda Wildlife Sanctuary is located in East Godavari, West Godavari in an area of 591 km2 (228 sq mi). Fauna found in this sanctuary are tigers, panthers, gaur, cheetal, chowsingha, sambar, blackbuck, mouse deer, barking deer, sloth bears, wild ogs, hyenas, jackals, wild boar, marsh crocodiles and a variety of birds.
Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary is located in East Godavari district in an area of 235.70 km2 (91.00 sq mi). It has the rare, endangered smooth Indian otter, fishing cat and estuarine crocodile. Other fauna are jackals, marine turtles, seagulls, storks, ducks and flamingos.
Krishna Wildlife Sanctuary is a wildlife sanctuary and estuary located in Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh. The sanctuary is home for reptiles like the garden lizard, the wall lizard, tortoises and snakes.
Rollapadu Wildlife Sanctuary is a wildlife sanctuary located in Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh in an area 6.14 km2 (2.37 sq mi). It is the only habitat in the state for the rare and highly endangered great Indian bustard. The blackbuck, wolf, jackal, bonnet macaque, Russell's viper and cobra are also found.
Gundla Brahmeswara Wildlife Sanctuary is located in Kurnool and Prakasam Districts of Andhra Pradesh. It covers an area of 1194 km2 is managed by the Andhra Pradesh Forest Department. The last surviving pristine forests of Nallamalai tract, it is rich in plants of ethnobotanical value.
Atapaka Bird Sanctuary, also known as Kolleru Wildlife Sanctuary (see also Kolleru Bird Sanctuary), is a largest freshwater lake located in West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh. The sanctuary falls under Kaikalur Forest Range. It is one of the Ramsar convention wetland sites, spread over an area of 308.55 km2 (119.13 sq mi).
Telineelapuram and Telukunchi Bird Sanctuaries are located in Srikakulam district of Andhra Pradesh. Every year, over 3,000 pelicans and painted storks visit from Siberia to these villages during September and stay until March.
Pulicat Lake Bird Sanctuary is a famous 481 km2 Protected area in Nellore District of Andhra Pradesh state. Pulicat Lake is the second largest brackish-water ecosystem in India. Central location is: 13°34′N 80°12′E. 327.33 km2 is managed by the Andhra Pradesh Forest Department and 153.67 km2 is managed by the Tamil Nadu Forest Department. 108 km2 is national park area. Rainfall ranges from 800 to 2000 mm. Temperature varies from 14 °C to 33 °C. Altitude ranges from 100’ MSL to 1200’ MSL.
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