- Places of Interest in Sri Lanka
- Cultural Festivals & Events
- Flora and Fauna
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About Sri Lanka
Flora and Fauna
Sri Lanka is home to a large assortment of mammals, reptiles and birds. Some of the most renowned wildlife sanctuary parks in the island such as Yala, Udawalawe, Wilpattu and Wasgamuwa offer travellers a truly rich wildlife experience.
Mammals of Sri Lanka
There are 86 mammals found in Sri Lanka. Out of these, 16 are endemic to the island. The Sri Lankan elephant holds a special place in the animal kingdom. One often meets elephant herds in parks such as Gal Oya and Udawalawe.
Other exotic creatures found commonly are:
Anteater, Barking Deer, Buffalo, Civet Cat, Elk, Fishing Cat, Giant Squirrel, Hog, Jackal, Jungle Cat, Leopard, Loris, Mongoose, Mouse Deer, Porcupine, Rusty Spotted Cat, Sambhur, Sloth Bear, Spotted Deer and Wild Boar.
There are many varieties of monkeys in Sri Lanka, including:
The Red-faced Macaque, Grey Langur, Purple-faced Leaf Monkey (the Bear-Monkey) and Shaggy Bear-Monkey are some of the endemic monkeys.
Fish, Frog and Reptiles of Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka’s waters are home to 54 types of fish, most of which are marsh and river-dwelling fish. The beautiful Carplet group comprises of 14 endemic species and is restricted to the perennial wet-zone streams. The Rainbow and Brown Trout are found in the cold, clear waters of the 7000 ft. high Horton Plains.There are 38 species of amphibians found in Sri Lanka, out of which, 16 are unique to the island. Nannophyrs, an endemic genus, is found in the Hill Country. From the large variety of reptiles found here, 75 of them such as the Saltwater Crocodile, Star Tortoise, Leatherback Turtle, Rock Python, Water Monitor and Land Lizard are endemic. Five of the 83 species of snake found here are lethal. These are the Cobra, Russell's Viper, Indian Krait, Ceylon Krait and Saw-scaled Viper.
Birds and Butterflies of Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka has recorded more than 468 species of birds out of which 169 species are migrant birds. Siberian, Scandinavian and Western European birds such as Sandpipers, Stilts, Plovers, Tern and Kites fly over and settle along the lagoons and salterns of the Eastern, North-Western and South-Eastern coasts around mid August.
There are 26 species of endemic birds.
Ceylon Spurfowl, Ceylon Junglefowl, Ceylon Wood Pigeon, Ceylon Lorikeet, Layard's Parakeet, Red-faced Malkoha, Green-billed Coucal, Chestnut-backed Owlet, Ceylon Grey Hornbill, Yellow-fronted Barbet, Ceylon Small Barbet, Black-capped Bulbul, Yellow-eared Bulbul, Ceylon Whistling Thrush, Spotted-winged Thrush, Ceylon Warbler, Dusky-blue Flycatcher, Brown-capped Babbler, Ceylon Rufous Babbler, Ashy-headed laughingThrush, Legge's Flowerpecker, Ceylon Hill White-eye, Ceylon Blue Magpie, Ceylon White-headed Starling, Ceylon Hill Myna and Ceylon Hill Munia.
Most of the 242 species of butterflies in Sri Lanka are found in the lower foothills (about 3000 feet above sea-level). About 6 species live at an elevation of 4000 ft. In March-April a spectacular seasonal migration occurs.