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Wildlife of Periyar
Situated in the picturesque western ghats, Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over 777km in a tropical forest area and has a rich plant, bird and animal life. The Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve has a beautiful lake at its center which was formed with the building of a dam in 1895. This lake serves as a perennial source of water for the local wildlife.
The Sanctuary offers refuge to a wide variety of animals like the Gaur, Wild Pigs, Sambar, Barking Deer, Elephants and sometimes even a Tiger. Over 200 varieties of birds and hundreds of types of butterflies can be seen here.
The Wildlife Sanctuary at Periyar also has over 320 avian species among which the Giant Hornbill, Peafowl and Osprey are more prominent. Aquatic birds like Darter, Kingfisher and Black necked stork can also be found here.One gets to see the Nilgiri Tahr here which is a mountain goat species. On a tour to the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, a unique sight is that of herds of elephants roaming freely by the lake.
At the Periyar Sanctuary, one can find reptiles also like the Indian Python, King Cobra, Viper, Krait besides Crocodiles and Tortoises.
There are spice gardens and plantation estates around the wildlife sanctuary which are certainly not to be missed. The spice gardens are famous not only for the abundant spices but also boast of a great number of medicinal plants of rare value. While exploring the wilds of the Periyar Sanctuary, one can enjoy a ride on the Elephants or take a boat cruise on the lake which is an excellent way to see many animals like the Elephants, Wild Boar, Sambar Deer and Otters in their natural habitat.