Coorg or Kodagu is a district in southern Karnataka, towards its border with Kerala. It lies in the Western Ghats, covering an area of approximately 4102 square kilometres. The lowest elevation of the region is 900 metres and the highest is 1750 metres above sea level, at the summit of Mount Tadiandamol. Its history has not been established as the artefacts, unearthed in the region, have not been dated yet. The Cholas absorbed the region into their territory in the 11th century and in the 12th, faced rebellion from the local chieftains. For the next seven centuries, various dynasties fought against each other to claim sovereignty over the area. In 1834, the British became successful in deposing the incumbent king and establishing their reign.
Since the Indian independence, the district has gained prominence as a tourist destination, with Coorg holidays being an ideal way for people to come here.
Talakaveri, Iruppu and Mallalli falls, Nisargadhama island and Nagarahole National Park are some of its popular attractions.
Nagarahole National Park
The Nagarahole National Park is basically a tiger reserve, established in 1999. About 6000 square kilometres of the Nilgiri Range of the Western Ghats, is occupied by this reserve. Its name comes from the Hindi word naga, meaning snakes, which refers to streams. More than 50 small and large streams and rivers flow through the national park, making the area highly fertile. Besides these, a number of natural and artificial lakes and ponds, act as important water sources for its inhabitants. The vegetation of the region is deciduous and trees like teak, rosewood, sandalwood and oak grow here, making it of high commercial significance. Other types of vegetation here are saj, crepe myrtle, kino, kadam and cotton. Clover, horse nettle, helicteres, lantana and bonesets are some other tree types in the park. Herbivores of the area probably feast on gooseberries and figs, which grow in abundance over here.
Carnivores, that live here, consist of tigers, leopards, wild dogs, sloth bears and hyenas. Various species of deer, gaurs and elephants make up the major herbivores of the region. About 6500 elephants inhabit the reserve and can sometimes be seen, relishing bamboo, which grows here in plenty. Visitors may also be able to spot jackals, wild boars, civets, mongooses, pangolins, hares, squirrels and porcupines while they roam around. The bird life of the park is equally rich with over 270 kinds. It is a hotspot for winged scavengers, such as spotted and grey-headed fish eagles and white-backed and red-headed vultures. Apart from these, pigeons, parakeets, hornbills, ibis, treepies, barbets, babblers and many other types of birds can also be found here. Some of the reptiles that are spotted here are mugger crocodiles, rock pythons and toads. Several small rodents are preyed upon by venomous crawlers, including Russell vipers, vine, wolf and rat snakes, and common kraits.
Wildlife enthusiasts can enter the protected are between 6 am and 9 am in the morning and between 4 pm and 6:30 pm in the evening. During monsoons, the entry is prohibited to give the animals privacy in their mating season. Winters should be chosen to come here as the temperatures do not drop too much and the weather remains pleasant. Summers are moderately hot so it is also a good time to see its rich wildlife diversity.