Saddle Peak National Park

Country/territory: India

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

Area: 3,254 ha

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 Saddle Peak National Park, with a peak of 737 m above msl has the highest point in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The peak is shaped like a double-humped saddle, hence the name. The Park runs north to south along the eastern coast of the North Andaman Island. Most of the eastern boundary of the National Park borders the sea, with a long and rocky beach. The Park also has a freshwater pool, from which water is piped to Diglipur (Pande et al. 1991). Though logged in the past, the Park’s littoral and evergreen forests are thick and luxuriant. There are 10 perennial streams and 132 seasonal streams inside the Park. Forest types include Andaman Tropical Evergreen, Andaman Moist Deciduous, Andaman Semi-evergreen, Canebrake, Wet Bamboo and littoral. Main floral species are Cratoxylum cochinchinense, Diospyros marmota, Dipterocarpus costatus and Euphorbia epiphylloides.

Key biodiversity

AVIFAUNA: A detailed checklist of birds is not available, but 11 out of 13 Restricted Range species (identified by Stattersfield et al. 1998) are known to occur in this IBA. Andaman Crake Rallina canningi is listed by BirdLife International (2001) as Threatened but Data Deficient. Another bird of great conservation concern is the Andaman Teal Anas albogularis. Earlier it was considered only a subspecies of Grey Teal Anas gibberifrons, therefore it was not listed by BirdLife International in their IUCN Red Data Book. But recently Rasmussen and Anderton (in press) have given it full species status. It is an extremely rare species and endemic to the Andaman Islands. The Andaman Teal is found in far flung islands and moves around a lot so it is difficult to estimate its population. Vijayan and Sankaran (2000) estimated population between 500 to 600. However, according to R. Sankaran (pers. comm.), the population was underestimated. Among the remaining ten Restricted Range species, only two species are very common: Brown Coucal Centropus andamanensis and White-headed Starling Sturnus erythropygius, while the rest of the birds are considered as Near Threatened. Some species such as Andaman Wood-Pigeon Columba palumboides and Andaman Cuckoo-Dove Macropygia rufipennis are not rare and many even be abundant locally, but looking at their habitat requirement of thick broadleaf primary and secondary evergreen forest and the threats to these forests, these species are listed as Near Threatened (BirdLife International 2001).

OTHER KEY FAUNA: Mammals of the Park include the endemic Andaman Horseshoe Bat Rhinolophus cognatus, included in the List 1 of threatened species in the 1996 IUCN List of Threatened Animals (Baillie and Groombridge 1996). The introduced Himalayan Palm Civet Paguma larvata is also found at this IBA site (Pande et al. 1991).

Saltwater Crocodile Crocodylus porosus and Andaman Water Monitor Lizard Varanus salvator andamanensis are found but it is difficult to estimate their density.

Key contributors: Harry Andrew and Rauf Ali.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Saddle Peak National Park. Downloaded from on 04/02/2023.