Chimmini Wildlife sanctuary is a national park located along the Western Ghats in Mukundapuram taluk of Thrissur District of Kerala state in India; one of the best places to visit in Kerala. It is spread along the Western Ghats. The place is a haven for more than hundreds of various species of birds, both common and endangered.
Chimmony dam adds more beauty to the entire place where serenity has been displayed so well. It is a protected area for a variety of wildlife, lush green forests, water reservoir etc. Also, you might get trekking and bamboo rafting facilities also around the sanctuary. So it is considered as a must visit place that offers a breathtaking panoramic view.
Geography and History
Established in 1984, the sanctuary with an area of about 85.067 km2 is on the Western slopes of the Nelliyampathi Hills. The highest peak in sanctuary is Punda peak (1116 m). Along with the neighboring Peechi-Vazhani Wildlife Sanctuary it forms a continuous protected area of 210 km2. It also lies just west of Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, providing some habitat connectivity with the forests of that relatively large protected area. The sanctuary consists of the watershed areas of Kurumali River and Mupliam rivers. Nestled in the sanctuary is Chimmony Dam which is built across the Chimmony river.
The sanctuary is an important bird area with 192 recorded avian species. Five Western Ghats endemic bird species occur here, including the grey-headed bulbul (Pycnonotus priocephalus), Indian rufous babbler (Turdoides subrufus) and white-bellied blue-flycatcher (Cyornis pallipes). Other interesting species found here include-Ceylon frogmouth (Batrachostomus moniliger), Indian edible-nest swiftlet (Collocalia unicolor), Malabar trogon (Harpactes fasciatus), Malabar whistling-thrush (Myiophonus horsfieldii) and Loten's sunbird (Nectarinia lotenia) (Islam and Rahmani 2004). A recent survey recorded the presence of the lesser fish eagle (Ichthyophaga humilis), which until recently was only known from the foothills of the Himalayas.
Other significant sightings during the survey included those of the large hawk cuckoo (Cuculus sparverioides), broad-billed roller (Eurystomus orientalis) and ashy minivet (Pericrocotus divaricatus). About half of the large mammals found in Kerala are reported from Chimmony Wildlife Sanctuary, especially some of the globally threatened species such as tiger (Panthera tigris), Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) and wild dog (Cuon alpinus). Other red-listed species found here include the Indian giant squirrel (Ratufa indica) and the endemic primates-lion-tailed macaque (Macaca silenus), Nilgiri langur (Trachypithecus johnii) and slender loris (Loris lydekkerianus). There are 39 species of mammals, 160 species of birds, 25 species of reptiles, 14 species of amphibians, and 31 species of fishes are reported from the sanctuary.