One of the best preserved forest regions, teeming with rich wildlife, the Periyar Tiger Reserve, located in Idukki and Pathanamthitta districts of Kerala State in South India is one of the 27 reserves in India meant for the conservation of the big cat - the Tiger. This 777 sq. km. tiger reserve is home to rare, endemic and endangered flora and fauna and forms the major watershed of two important rivers of Kerala, the Periyar and the Pamba.
The tiger reserve has a rich diversity of animals. The diverse forest types found here support around several mammalian species, huge variety of birds and the region has an appreciable presence of reptilian and fish life. The tiger reserve is also home to around a large number of butterfly species.Even though dedicated for the conservation tigers, the Periyar Tiger Reserve is noted for its good elephant population. These gentle giants can be seen roaming around in herds, especially at the lake fringes. Other animal members that have a credible presence in the tiger reserve are the Gaur, the Sambar, which is the largest among deer types in India and the wild pig.
For avid bird watchers, the tiger reserve is a veritable paradise and is noted for Raptors, Water birds, Galliform birds, Pigeons, Woodpeckers and Passerines. The region also support good number of butterfly species. Southern bird wing, Common rose, Malabar rose, Common Mormon, Bluebottle, Common albatross, Great eggfly, Evening brown, Jezebel, Clipper, Common palmfly are among the 160 odd butterfly species found here.