Nelliyampathy (Nemmara Division)

Country/territory: India

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

Area: 20,005 ha

Bombay Natural History Society
IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) State (condition) Pressure (threat) Response (action)
2003 not assessed high not assessed
For more information about IBA monitoring, please click here

Site description (2004 baseline)
The Nelliyampathy Hills start from the southern and southwestern margin of the Palakkad Gap and extend south, enclosing the Parambikulam basin. The western edge of the Nelliyampathy gradually descends to the midlands of Thrissur district through a wide foothill zone drained by Puzhachal and Karuvannur. Topographically, the entire area is hilly in character. The Kuriarkutty river is formed by the confluence of Thekkady river originating from the private forests of Thekkady and Vettiar flowing from the Nelliyampathy forest. The Karapara river also originates from the Nelliyampathy range and joins other rivers to form the main Chalakudy river. The Tropical Evergreen Forest of the Nelliyampathy Range comprises of the tree species such as Palaquium ellipticum, Cullenia exariilata, Mesua ferrea and Drypetes wightii.

Key biodiversity

AVIFAUNA: 109 species of the birds are reported from Nelliyampathy (Prasad and Vijayan 2002). Globally threatened Nilgiri Wood-Pigeon Columba elphinstonii is found here but it is not common. Even Kinloch (1921) during 1910 to 1920 found it sparse. Zacharias and Gaston (1999) also found it uncommon. This site lies in the Western Ghats Endemic Bird Area (Stattersfield et al. 1998) in which 16 endemic or Restricted Range species have been listed. In this IBA, 12 of these 16 endemics have been found. Broad-tailed Grass-Warbler or Grassbird Schoenicola platyura is listed as Vulnerable by BirdLife International (2001). It is one of the four threatened members of the suite of 16 bird species that are entirely restricted to the Western Ghats Endemic Bird Area (Stattersfield et al. 1998). In the Western Ghats, shola grassland areas are heavily overgrazed and this is the major concern for this species and the Near Threatened Nilgiri Pipit Anthus nilghiriensis. The Broad-tailed Grass-Warbler, in particular, frequents tall grass (BirdLife International 2001). J. Praveen (in litt. 2003) saw 4-5 birds in a grassland, flitting among the grass, one was delivering a lark-like warbling song, perched on a rock. Tytler’s Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus tytleri breeds in the Himalayas and winters in the Western Ghats (Ali and Ripley 1987, Grimmett et al. 1998). J. Praveen (in litt. 2003) found it common in Nelliyampathy.

OTHER KEY FAUNA: Lion-tailed Macaque, Tiger, Nilgiri Langur, Nilgiri Tahr, Gaur, Sambar, Giant Squirrel are some of the species commonly seen here.

Key contributors: J. Praveen and P. O. Nameer.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Nelliyampathy (Nemmara Division). Downloaded from on 27/09/2023.