Habarana Hurulu Eco Park in Sri Lanka:- An Elephant Paradise
The Habarana Hurulu Forest Reserve in Sri Lanka is a thriving eco system with a variety of creatures.
It was designated as a biosphere reserve in 1977. The forest reserve is a very important habitat of the Sri Lankan elephant. The animal is known for its migratory behavior and does so especially in the dry season between the forests situated around the area.
The Habarana Hurulu forest reserve represents the dry-zone dry evergreen forests Sri Lanka.
There is no record of the number of people who live in this forest reserve. Cultivation is their main means of living. In Recent times the expansion of human settlements and forest clearance have resulted in a human–elephant clashes.
Translocation is the conventional solution taken to solve the issue.
The annual average temperature of the nature reserve is approximately around 27.3 °C. And the area receives 1600 mm of rainfall annually. A distinct dry season of three to six months persists during the months April - May to September. The elevation of the area ranges from 90 m to 150 m above sea level.
Flora and fauna
Chloroxylon swietenia (Sinhalese "Burutha"), Manilkara hexandra ("Palu") and Diospyros ebenum ("Kaluwara") are the dominant tree species. The Indian star tortoise, Sri Lanka junglefowl, Sri Lankan elephant, Sri Lanka leopard and rusty-spotted cat are among the endangered species of the forest reserve.
Location- North Central province, Sri Lanka
Nearest cities - Dambulla, Minneriya, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa
Coordinates- 8°12′36″N 80°50′59″E
Area- 25.50 km2
Governing body- Department of Forest Conservation
Habarana Hurulu Forest Reserve of Sri Lanka was designated as a biosphere reserve in January 1977. The forest reserve is an important habitat of the Sri Lankan elephant. Hurulu forest reserve represents Sri Lanka dry-zone dry evergreen forests. There are many other protected areas situated around Hurulu Forest Reserve viz. Ritigala strict nature reserve, Minneriya-Girithale and Mahaweli flood plains nature reserves, Wasgamuwa National Park and Kahalla-Pallekele sanctuary. Carved out at the edge of the Hurulu Forest Reserve is the Hurulu Eco Park which offers jeep safaris.