Kerala's tiger reserve to open soon
21 Dec 2009, 0640 hrs IST, IANS
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala's second tiger reserve will open by January or February next year, state forest minister Binoy Viswam said Sunday.
"All the formalities are over and the opening would take place either in January or February, depending on the availability of union environment minister Jairam Ramesh," Viswam said.
"Over the last many months, we have been finalising the legalities for turning the Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary into the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve," Viswam said.
The sanctuary was established in 1973 and is located over a 285-sq-km protected area in Chittur taluk in Palakkad district of Kerala.
"To this area, we added another 358.662 sq km of forests and the tiger reserve would now have a total area of 643.662 sq km," he said.
The sanctuary has a rich diversity of animal life including 39 species of mammals, 16 species of amphibians, 268 species of birds, reptiles 61 species, fish 47 species, insects 1,049 species and butterflies 124 species.
The sanctuary has a variety of trees mainly teak, neem, sandalwood and rosewood.