Saturday, August 26, 2023

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary UPSC

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the state of Karnataka, India. The sanctuary is named after the Pushpagiri peak located inside the sanctuary.

Pushpagiri peak, the highest peak in the sanctuary, is a popular destination for trekkers and nature enthusiasts. The trek to Pushpagiri offers stunning views of the surrounding landscapes and an opportunity to experience the natural beauty of the Western Ghats.

The sanctuary is adjacent to the Kukke Subramanya Temple, which is a significant pilgrimage site for Hindus. The temple is dedicated to Lord Subramanya and attracts a considerable number of devotees.

The sanctuary is part of the larger efforts to conserve the Western Ghats, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its protection helps in safeguarding the unique biodiversity of the region.

Table of Contents

  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Location
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary History
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Area
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Hills
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary River
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Flora
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Fauna
    • Mammals
    • Birds
    • Reptile
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary UPSC Questions

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Location

The Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is located in Somwarpet taluk of  the Kodagu (Coorg) district of the state of Karnataka, India. It is situated in the Western Ghats mountain range, which is known for its rich biodiversity. 

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Nearest Airport:

The nearest airport to Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is the Mangalore International Airport, located in Mangalore, Karnataka. The airport is approximately 150-160 kilometers away from the sanctuary. Travelers can reach the sanctuary from the airport by road, which takes around 4 to 5 hours depending on the route and traffic conditions.

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Nearest Railway Station:

The nearest railway station to Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is the Subrahmanya Road Railway Station, located in Subrahmanya, Karnataka. It is approximately 35-40 kilometers away from the sanctuary. From the railway station, travelers can hire taxis or use other local transportation options to reach the sanctuary.

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary History

Pre-Declaration Era: Before its formal declaration as a wildlife sanctuary, Pushpagiri and its surrounding region held significance for indigenous communities and local residents. These communities often revered the land for its natural beauty, cultural heritage, and as a source of resources.

Formal Establishment: Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary was officially established on August 31, 1987. This marked a pivotal moment in the region's conservation history. The sanctuary was carved out of the Kadamakal Reserved Forests, reflecting a growing recognition of the need to protect and preserve the area's biodiversity.

Conservation Imperative: The establishment of Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary was driven by a pressing need for conservation. The Western Ghats, where the sanctuary is situated, is renowned for its incredible biodiversity. This unique ecosystem houses numerous endemic species, some of which are endangered.

Confirmation and Final Notification: The sanctuary's status was solidified on June 13, 1994, with the issuance of the final notification. This step formally enshrined Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary's role as a protected area, safeguarding its flora, fauna, and ecological integrity.

Biodiversity Hotspot: The sanctuary's location in the Western Ghats, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, underlines its importance as a biodiversity hotspot. The history of Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is intertwined with its role in preserving the region's rich tapestry of life.

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Area

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary covers an area of approximately 102 square kilometers (39.4 square miles). The sanctuary's diverse topography includes evergreen and semi-evergreen forests, shola grasslands, and other important habitats that contribute to its rich biodiversity.

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Hills

Mandalpatti peak, Kote betta and Makkalagudi betta are mountains adorning the sanctuary. These peaks contribute to the sanctuary's diverse landscape and ecological significance. Here's some information about these specific mountains:

(1) Mandalpatti Peak:

Mandalpatti is a popular hilltop located near Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary. It's known for its stunning panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes, including lush forests and valleys. The peak is often visited by trekkers and tourists seeking a vantage point to admire the natural beauty of the Western Ghats.

(2) Kote Betta:

Kote Betta, also known as Kotebetta, is another prominent peak in the vicinity of Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary. It's one of the tallest peaks in the region and is favored by trekkers and adventure enthusiasts. The trek to Kote Betta offers an opportunity to experience the diverse flora and fauna of the Western Ghats.

(3) Makkalagudi Betta:

Makkalagudi Betta is yet another hill that contributes to the scenic allure of Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary. The lush vegetation and elevated terrain of Makkalagudi Betta likely provide habitats for various species of wildlife and plants.

These mountains, along with the Pushpagiri peak itself, are integral to the sanctuary's ecosystem. They create a range of habitats, from the lower slopes to the summits, which support a variety of species. 

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary River

The Large perennial streams cutting across the sanctuary are Lingadahole, Marigundihole, Padakka hole, Devara hole, Uppangala hole, Kadamakal hole. 


Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Flora

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is renowned for its diverse flora, which is typical of the Western Ghats region. The sanctuary's varying elevations, ranging from lower slopes to hilltops, contribute to its rich vegetation. Here are some of the flora species you can find in the sanctuary:

(1) Evergreen Forests:

These forests are characterized by dense tree canopies that retain their leaves throughout the year. Common tree species include Rosewood (Dalbergia latifolia), Cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum), and Wild Jack (Artocarpus hirsutus).

(2) Semi-Evergreen Forests:

These forests have a mix of deciduous and evergreen species. Trees like Teak (Tectona grandis), Silver Oak (Grevillea robusta), and Indian Laurel (Terminalia elliptica) can be found here.

(3) Shola Forests:

Shola forests are unique to the Western Ghats and are characterized by stunted trees, many of which are endemic species. You might find species like Rhododendron arboreum (known as Rhododendron Nilgiricum), Kurinji (Strobilanthes kunthiana), and Vishnukranthi (Evolvulus alsinoides) in these areas.

(4) Grasslands:

The sanctuary has grassland patches known as "sholas" at higher elevations. These grasslands are interspersed with patches of stunted trees and shrubs. Grassland species like Imperata cylindrica and various wildflowers are present.

(5) Aquatic and Riparian Plants:

Along the riverbanks and streams, you can find various aquatic and riparian plants, such as Bamboo (Bambusa species), reeds, and ferns.

(6) Epiphytic Plants:

Due to the high humidity in the region, epiphytic plants like orchids, ferns, and mosses often thrive on tree branches and trunks.

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Fauna (Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Animals)

Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is home to a diverse range of fauna, thanks to its varied habitats and its location in the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot. Here are some of the animal species you might encounter in the sanctuary:


  • Tiger
  • Leopard
  • Lion-tailed Macaque
  • Asian Elephant
  • Indian Wild Dog
  • Slender Loris
  • Nilgiri Marten 
  • Grey Langur
  • Bonnet Macaque
  • Jungle Cat
  • Sloth Bear
  • Indian Muntjac
  • Sambar Deer
  • Spotted Deer
  • Barking Deer
  • Wild Boar
  • Indian Giant squirrel
  • Indian Gaur
  • Leopard Cat
  • Golden Jackal
  • Small Indian Civet
  • Asian Palm Civet
  • Brown Palm Civet
  • Giant Flying Squirrel
  • Grey Mangoose
  • Stripe Necked Mangoose
  • Otter
  • Indian Crested Porcupine
  • Indian Pangolin
  • Indian Hare
  • Indian Spotted Chevrotin


    What birds are in Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary?

    • Black-chinned Laughing Thrush
    • Nilgiri Wood-Pigeon
    • Grey breasted Laughing Thrush
    • Black and Orange Flycatcher
    • Nilgiri Flycatcher
    • Small Greenbilled Malkoha 
    • Hill Swallow 
    • Loten’s Sunbird 


    • Gliding Lizard
    • King Cobra
    • Bamboo Pit Viper

    Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary UPSC Questions

    Q. In which state is the Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary located?

    A. Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the state of Karnataka, India. It is situated in the Kodagu (Coorg) district of Karnataka, which is part of the Western Ghats mountain range. The sanctuary is known for its rich biodiversity and is an important conservation area within the Western Ghats region.

    Q. What is Pushpagiri wildlife sanctuary famous for?

    A. Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is famous for its diverse and unique biodiversity, particularly its flora and fauna endemic to the Western Ghats region. Here are some reasons why the sanctuary is renowned:

    i. Biodiversity Hotspot: The sanctuary is located in the Western Ghats, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the world's biodiversity hotspots. Pushpagiri's rich variety of plant and animal species contribute to the ecological significance of the region.

    ii. Endemic Species: The Western Ghats is known for its high level of endemism, meaning many species found here are not found anywhere else in the world. Pushpagiri likely harbors several endemic plants and animals that are adapted to its specific habitats.

    iii. Rare and Endangered Species: The sanctuary provides habitat for various rare and endangered species, including the lion-tailed macaque, a critically endangered primate, and the Nilgiri langur.

    iv. Trekking Destination: Pushpagiri peak, the highest peak in the sanctuary, attracts trekkers and nature enthusiasts. The trek offers breathtaking views of the Western Ghats and an opportunity to experience the region's natural beauty.

    v. Birdwatching: The sanctuary is a haven for birdwatchers due to its diverse avian population. Bird species like the Malabar trogon, Malabar whistling thrush, and great hornbill are commonly spotted.

    vi. Conservation Efforts: As part of the Western Ghats, Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary contributes to conservation efforts in this ecologically sensitive region. The sanctuary's protection helps preserve the habitats and species that make the Western Ghats unique.

    vii. Shola Forests: The presence of shola forests, a type of high-altitude montane forest, adds to the sanctuary's distinctiveness. These unique ecosystems are essential for water conservation and harbor many endemic species.

    vii. Medicinal Plants: The Western Ghats, including Pushpagiri, is known for its rich diversity of medicinal and aromatic plants. The sanctuary might harbor various plant species with potential medicinal properties.

    Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary

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