The Western Ghats knows as Sahyadri, is a mountain range that runs parallel to the western coast of the Indian penins
ula, located entirely in India, are well known for their rich and unique assemblage of flora and fauna. Although most of the Western Ghats appear more like rolling hills than craggy snow-covered peaks. Parts of it do reach over 2,000 metres and it contains the highest mountain in India, the Anaimudi, at 2,695 metres.
The Western Ghats is one of the eight “hottest hot-spots“, It is sometimes called the Great Escarpment of India. The Western Ghats extend from north to south along the western edge of the Deccan Plateau, and separates the plateau from a narrow coastal plain, called Konkan, along the Arabian Sea. A total of thirty nine properties including national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and reserve forests were designated as world heritage sites – twenty in Kerala, ten in Karnataka, five in Tamil Nadu and four in Maharashtra. This hill cover Roundly 6% of India’s total geography. Western ghats spread in six states Goa, Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Pondicherry and in Maharastra, The range start near the border of Gujarat and Maharashtra, south of the Tapti river, and runs approximately 1,600 km through the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu ending at Kanyakumari, at the southern tip of India. Western ghat is home of many hill station like Lonavala-Khandala, Amboli ghat, Matheran, Mahabalesver etc.
The area is one of the world’s ten “Hottest biodiversity hotspots” and has around 5000 species of flowering plants, 1800 species of non-flowering plants, 139 mammal species, 500 bird species, 170 amphibian species, 6000 insects species and 300 freshwater fish species; it is likely that many undiscovered species live in the Western Ghats. At least 300 globally threatened species occur in the Western Ghats.
The peaks of the Western Ghats intercept the south-western monsoon winds, which bring heavy rain between June and September. An astonishing 2 to 8 metres of rain drench the Western Ghats each year, most of it falling in the short monsoon period. These rains feed dozens of rivers that originate in the mountains, and flow down into India, providing drinking water, irrigation, and power for approximately 240 million people.
The Western Ghats mountain range is itself a major attraction in India along with its high hills, deep valleys,mountain grasslands, dense and rain forest. Western Ghats is one of the UNESCO World Heritage Site in India and paradise of various species of Flora and Fauna, Most of them are endemic to the region. Some attracted place of Western ghat are as below:
Hill Ranges :
The Western Ghats contains major hill ranges starting from Western ghat ranges in Maharashtra Nilgiris hill ranges in Tamil Nadu. Such as Ooty, Mahabaleshwar, Madikeri and the most famous Munnar. Famous hills of Western Ghats are Sahyandhris, Nilgiris, Palani Hills,Anaimalai Hills and Cardamom Hills.
The hill ranges of Western Ghats are home to some of the highest mountain peaks of India. Anamudi or Anai Mudi is a mountain located in the Indian state of Kerala. It is the highest peak in the Western Ghats and South India, at an elevation of 2,695 metres, and a topographic prominence of 2,479 metres. Other highest peaks of the Western Ghats are Meesapulimala,Doddabetta in Nilgiris hills, Kalsubai in Maharashtra and Mullayanagiri in Karnataka.
The Western Ghats are home to four type of tropical and subtropical forest ecoregions, The evergreen forests in Wayanad mark the transition zone between the northern and southern ecologic regions of the Western Ghats. Above 1,000 meters are the South Western Ghats montane rain forests, also cooler and wetter than the surrounding lowland forests, and dominated by evergreen trees, although some montane grasslands and stunted forests can be found at the highest elevations. The wild forest of Western Ghats are distributed as National Parks,Wildlife Sanctuary, Tiger reserve, biosphere reserves and many protected areas.
Western Ghats were well-covered in dense forests that provided wild foods and natural habitats for native tribal people. The major species of Flora in Western Ghats are present in the sholas of the Nilgiri Hills. Four thousand species of flowering plants are known from the Western Ghats. The gymnosperm flora is represented by Cycas circinalis
The 39 component parts of this serial property fall under a number of protection regimes, ranging from Tiger Reserves, National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, and Reserved Forests. In Western ghats 13 National park situated. Famous National parks are deciduous forests of Bandipur National Park, Silent Valley National Park, Periyar National Park and Eravikulam National Park. The rainforest of majestic mountain is full of natural beauty and one of the must see place in India.
Lakes & Rivers
The major riversystems originating in the Western Ghats include Godavari, Kaveri, Krishna, Thamiraparani and Tungabhadra. The Western Ghats have several manmade lakes and reservoirs. The famous lakes are Nilgiri, Lakkadi, Ooty, Kodiakanal, Barijam, Palani hills, In the Munnar range Devikulam and Letchmi Elephant.
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