Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve

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A recent paper published by a conservationist said that the Asian elephant has lost most of its optimal habitat in the Nilgiri biosphere Reserve.

About Elephants

  • The study said that human settlements and crop cultivation have hindered the movement of the elephants, keeping them confined to the hilly areas, considered sub-optimal habitats.
  • IUCN status of Elephant: Endangered
  • Wildlife(protection) act 1972: Schedule 1


Key facts about NBR

  • It harbours a wide spectrum of ecosystem types such as tropical evergreen forests, Montane sholas and grasslands, semi-evergreen forests, moist deciduous forests, dry deciduous forests and thorn forests.  
  • The major part of the core areas spread over Kerala and Tamil Nadu States,
  • This range of ecosystem occurs from hilly terrain to the meadows extending from 300 to 2670 m constituting an excellent habitat for the flora, fauna and other microbial forms.
  • The varied habitats of the NBR house a sizeable number of species of animals and plants including a large number of endemics having special relevance to conservation.
  • Fauna: Animals like Nilgiri tahr, Nilgiri langur, slender loris, blackbuck, tiger, gaur, Indian elephant and marten are found here.
  • Tribal Population: Tribal groups like the Todas, Kotas, Irullas, Kurumbas, Paniyas, Adiyans, Edanadan Chettis, Cholanaickens, Allar, Malayan, etc., are native to the reserve.
  • Protected Areas within the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve are
    • The Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, Bandipur National Park, Nagarhole National Park, Mukurthi National Park and Silent Valley.


Q1) What is Project Elephant?

It is a centrally sponsored scheme which was launched in February 1992 for the protection of elephants, their habitats and corridors.

Source: Endangered Asian elephant has lost most of its optimal habitat in Nilgiri Reserve: Study