Vegetation

The vegetation shows an entire spectrum ranging from sub-temperate sholas to dry scrub of the arid plains. In many areas, the vegetation of the Sanctuary is highly disturbed mainly due to a combination of factors like earlier fellings and planting and anthropogenic pressures of the settlements inside and on the fringes, particularly cattle grazing. Therefore in many cases secondary forest types replace primary types and an obvious classification of forest types is impracticable. Notwithstanding these, the vegetation of the Sanctuary can be broadly classified in to the following types according to Champion and Seth (1968) and Chandrasekaran (1962).

They are:

  1. Southern tropical thorn forest (Scrub jungle)
  2. Southern dry mixed deciduous forest (Dry deciduous forest)
  3. Southern moist mixed deciduous forest (Moist deciduous forest)
  4. Tropical riparian fringing forest (Riparian forest)
  5. Southern montane wet temperate forest (Hill shola forest)
  6. Southern montane wet grassland (Grasslands)

The dominant vegetation is dry deciduous forest followed by scrub forest. Together they constitute about 50 % of the total forest area. They are located in the low altitude areas. The riparian fringing forests are linearly distributed along the hill folds and occupy a small but considerable area. Shola forests occupy a tiny fraction of the total area.