National Parks of Kerala

National Parks of Kerala

A national park is a vast area of land protected by the Indian Government under the Category II of IUCN Protected Areas where human activities like forestry, poaching, hunting, grazing, cultivation, and other developmental activities are not permitted and are strictly reserved for the preservation of wildlife and biodiversity.

Private ownership rights are not allowed inside these parks. Their boundaries are well-demarcated and restricted.

National Parks of Kerala

There are 6 national parks in Kerala which are as follows :

NameDistrictYear of Formation
Eravikulam National ParkIdukki1978
Periyar National ParkIdukki &
Pathanamthitta
1982
Silent Valley National ParkPalakkad1984
Mathikettan Shola National ParkIdukki2003
Anamudi Shola National ParkIdukki2003
Pampadum Shola National ParkIdukki2004

Basic Facts

  • No. of National Parks in Kerala – 6.
  • First National Park of Kerala – Eravikulam.
  • Largest National Park in Kerala – Periyar National Park (Area: 305 km²).
    • for PSC – Eravikulam (Area: 97 km²).*
  • Smallest National Park of Kerala – Pambadum Shola.
  • Latest National Park in Kerala – Pambadum Shola.
  • District with most no. of National Parks – Idukki (5).

Eravikulam National Park

  • Location – Devikulam taluk (Idukki).
  • First National Park of Kerala.
  • Anamudi, the highest peak of South India.
  • Tourism ZoneRajamala tourism zone.
  • National Park was declared as a wildlife sanctuary in 1975 (Eravikulam-Rajamala Wildlife Sanctuary in 1975).
  • Declared as national park in 1978.
  • Protected Species – Neelakurinji flowers, Nilgiri Tahr.
    • The scientific name of Nilgiri Tahr – Nilgiritragus hylocrius.

Silent Valley National Park

  • Location – Nilgiri hills, Mannarcaud Taluk (Palakkad).
  • Second Largest National Park in Kerala (237 square kilometres).
  • Largest Rain forest in Kerala.
  • Established in – 1980.
  • Declared as National Park in – 1984.
    • by the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
  • Declared as Buffer Zone in – 2007.
  • The name 'Silent Valley' was suggested by – Robert Wright (1847).
  • Inaugurated by Rajiv Gandhi (then Prime Minister, 1985).
  • Protected Species – Lion-tailed macaque.
    • The scientific name of Lion-tailed macaque – Macaque silanus.
    • Presence of Lion-tailed macaque (mainly fruit eaters) is due to the presence of – Vediplavu (Cullenia exarillata).
  • Famous due to the total absence of chirping of Cicadas (Hence the name "Silent Valley").
  • National Park referred to as 'Sairandhrivanam' in Mahabharatha.
  • National Park of Kerala where the only surviving evergreen forests in the Sahyadri is found.
  • The only river of Kerala that flows through the virgin forest of Silent Valley National Park for more than 20 km – Kuntippuzha.
  • River originating from Silent Valley National ParkThuthapuzha.
  • National Park from Kerala that in the list of UNESCO Natural World Heritage Sites in India.

Periyar National Park

  • Location – Cardamom Hills.
  • Largest National Park in Kerala.
  • Rivers flowing through Periyar National Park – Periyar (Periyar Tiger Reserve) & Pamba.
  • Protected Species – White Tigers.
  • Famous Tiger and Elephant reserve.

Mathikettan Shola

  • Location – Pooppara village, Udumbanchola Taluk (Idukki).
  • Declared as Reserve Forest in 1897.
  • Declared as National Park in November 21, 2003.
  • Preservation of Shola forest and its elephant strip.

Pampadum Shola

  • Location – Marayoor village (Idukki).
  • Smallest National Park.
  • Declared as National Park in 2003.
* subjective to changes.

📝SideNotes:

  • Forest Conservation Rules were formulated in – 1972.
  • First National Park in India – Hailey National Park (1936).
  • Hailey National Park is later renamed as – Jim Corbett National Park (Uttarakhand).
  • Largest National Park in India – Hemis National Park (Jammu & Kashmir, 4400 sq.km.).
  • Smallest National Park in India – South Button Island (Andaman Nicobar, 2 sq.km.).
  • District of Kerala which was devoid of any protected forest land until 2013 – Alappuzha.
    • Veeyapuram (approx. 15 acres) of Karthikappalli Taluk, near the tributaries of the rivers Pampa and Achancoil was declared as a reserve forest in the year 2013.
  • Smallest protected area in Kerala situated near Kochi – Mangalavanam.
  • Lungs of Kochi – Mangalavanam.
  • Dakshina Bhageerathi – Pamba.
  • River Baris – Pamba.

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