Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary

Country/territory: India

IBA Criteria met: A1, A2 (2004)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 7,000 ha

Protection status:

Bombay Natural History Society
Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2003 high not assessed not assessed
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

Site description
The Idduki Wildlife Sanctuary, with an extent of 70 sq. km, is situated in Idduki district. The area was previously part of Kottayam Forest Division and now comes under the administrative control of the Idukki Wildlife Warden. It is situated adjacent to and south of Painavu, the district headquarters of Idukki revenue district and is 120 km north east of Kottayam. In the 1960s, the Idduki Hydroelectric Project was started and involved the construction of three dams, namely Idduki, Chemthony and Kulamavu. The Idduki reservoir spreads out to 33 sq km. In order to prevent siltation, the Government of Kerala protected the surrounding forest and established a sanctuary. The Sanctuary is situated in the Western Ghats in Thodupuzha and Udumpanchola talukas. The lake bordering three sides of the Sanctuary offers a panoramic view. The Sanctuary consists of two sections (1) Chempakassery which was originally part of Nagarampara Range and (2) Kakkathodu Section, originally part of Ayyappancoil Range. The area of the Sanctuary falls in Nagarampara Reserve Forest and forms the catchment area of the Idukki Hydroelectric Project (Ramesan 1999-2000). The average elevation of the Sanctuary is 700 m. The vegetation mainly consists of Moist Deciduous forest, some Tropical Wet Evergreen forests and Semi-evergreen forests and grasslands on certain hilltops. Unfortunately, the Kerala Forest Development Corporation has converted most of the grasslands into Eucalyptus plantations.

Key biodiversity

AVIFAUNA: 219 species of birds reported from Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary (Nameer, 2000 and 2003), including 11 endemic species of Western Ghats and 5 globally threatened species. This site is considered as Data Deficient.

OTHER KEY FAUNA: A small population of less than 100 Asian Elephant Elephas maximus is found in this IBA. They can be seen on the banks of the reservoir along the northwestern borders (Vijaykumaran and Balasubramanyan 1985). Other mammals found in this IBA are Tiger Panthera tigris, Leopard Panthera pardus, Sambar Cervus unicolor, Barking Deer Muntiacus muntjak, Slender Loris Loris lydekkerianus, Common Giant Flying Squirrel Petaurista petaurista and Sloth Bear Melursus ursinus. Wild Dog Cuon alpinus also occur in small numbers (Vijaykumaran and Balasubramanyan 1985). Bonnet Macaque Macaca radiata and Nilgiri Langur Trachypithecus johni, are the two primates. Mouse Deer Moschiola meminna and Pangolin Manis crassicaudata are also present, but they are extremely difficult to see due to their nocturnal or cryptic habits. Radhakrishnan (1999) has collected 32 species of reptiles in Idduki district, including this Sanctuary.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary. Downloaded from on 07/07/2020.