BRT – Biligiri Ranganatha Swamy Temple tiger reserve known as BRT hills has banned honking and playing of music inside the forest.
This move is to ensure tranquility of the natural surroundings where wild animals exist.
The forest department has decided to raise awareness among tourists and motorists. The commuters are refrained from honking and playing music while in transit on road passing through Biligiri Ranganatha Swmay Temple (BRT) Tiger Reserve.
The Biligirirangana Hills, commonly called BR Hills, is a hill range situated in south-eastern Karnataka at its border with Tamil Nadu (Erode District) in South India. The area is called Biligiriranganatha Swamy Temple Wildlife Sanctuary or simply BRT Wildlife Sanctuary.
It has been named after Rangaswamy temple that is embellished with a whitish rock at the helms of the sanctuary.
The sanctuary derives its name Biligiri (Kannada for white rock) from the white rock face that constitutes the major hill crowned with the temple of Lord Rangaswamy or from the white mist and the silver clouds that cover these hills for a greater part of the year.
The hill is a protected reserve under the Wildlife Protection Act of 1975. Being at the confluence of the Western Ghats and the Eastern Ghats, the sanctuary is home to eco-systems that are unique to both the mountain ranges.
Flora and fauna at BRT :
The gift of a wonderful ecosystem is the worthy delight of flora, fauna and cultural wealth. The amazing mix of the hills, ridges and grasslands of BRT tiger reserve resides an astounding variety of varied species of flora and fauna.
Bestowing a distinguished quality to the region of the wildlife sanctuary, the Soliga temple in K.Gudi sets an amazing blend of lush green forests and tents placed in the midst of wilderness.
There are hills which inhabit a wide variety of flora and fauna. This unique sanctuary exhibits scrub, dry deciduous, moist deciduous, evergreen, semi evergreen and shoal forests. It is widely known for its many endemic species of plants including valuable medicinal ones.
Tiger Reserve :
The site was declared a tiger reserve in January 2011 by the Karnataka government, a few months after approval from India’s National Tiger Conservation Authority.
The BR hills links the Eastern Ghats and the Western Ghats allowing animals to move between them and facilitating gene flow between populations of species in these areas. Thus, this sanctuary serves as an important biological bridge for the biota of the entire Deccan Plateau.
Spread over 583 sq. km, these jungles are home to tigers apart from leopards, chitals, dholes and other animals.
Data from the tiger censures done in 2017-18 indicates that there are around 63 tigers at BRT forest.
Birds and Animals found at BRT :
Animals : Tiger, Gaur, Elephant, Wild dogs (Dholes), Sloth bears, Chital (Spotted Deer), Sambar Deer, Leopards, Jackals, Wild boars, Mouse Deer, Barking Deer, Mongoose etc.
Birds : Oriental white-backed vulture, greater spotted eagle, Nilgiri wood-pigeon, darters, oriental white ibis, greater grey headed fish eagle, red headed vulture, blue winged parakeet, Malabar grey hornbill, white bellied treepie, white cheeked barbet, Indian scimitar babbler, Malabar whistling thrush, painted bush quail, Sirkeer malkhoa, ashy prinia, Indian robin, Indian peafowl, yellow legged green pigeon.
Reptiles : Mugger, Common vine snake, common wolf snake, rat snake, bamboo pit viper, Russell’s viper, common krait, Indian rock python, Indian monitor lizard, common toad.
Ban of honking and music at BRT :
The forest officials in Chamarajanagar have rolled out the initiative after incidents of violation of rules were observed by pilgrims visiting the Ranganatha Swamy and K.Gudi elephant camp situated inside the woods.
For the past week, forest department has deputed staff at the 2 entrances – Gumballu near Yelandur and Hondara balu close to Chamarajanagar. The staff at these places are distributing pamphlets to motorists who are entering woods. The pamphlets informs the motorists about the rules to be observed while inside in the forest.
Other rules to be followed at BRT :
Apart from initiating efforts to bring down noise pollution, the forest authorities are working towards raising safety standards. Visitors are warned against stopping the vehicle in the forest, not to feed animals and not to venture in the forest unguarded and unprotected.
This initiative was in the wake of visitors disrupting the environs and tranquility of the forest and those Vvsitors getting down of their vehicles to take selfies.
Those found violating the ruled will be given warning first time, if caught 2nd time a fine of upto Rs.1000/- will be collected. Speed limit inside the forest is restricted to 30 kmph to avoid road kills.