Friday, October 23, 2020

Bellanwila Attidiya Sanctuary

Bellanwila Attidiya Sanctuary
The Bellanwila–Attidiya Sanctuary is one of the Sanctuaries in Sri Lanka. It is situated near Bellanwila Viharaya in Colombo District. The sanctuary is among the most important of the few remaining wetlands around Colombo (Green, 1990)

History
The area where the present sanctuary has been established was agricultural land used to cultivate rice. However, since 1980 it gradually transformed into marshland (Green, 1990). On 25 July 1990, the Department of Wildlife Conservation designated this area as a sanctuary under the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance through a government Gazette (Extraordinary) notification published under the no. 620/9. 

The Bellanwila-Attidiya Sanctuary has also been recognized as a wetland of international importance. It was listed in the Directory of Asian Wetlands by the IUCN in 1989 (Henkanaththegedara et al., 2005; Karunarathna et al., 2009).

The wetland
Situated within the low country wet zone, the wetland has a tropical monsoonal climate (Henkanaththegedara et al., 2005; Karunarathna et al., 2009). The annual rainfall for the area is about 2500-5000 mm and the mean annual temperature is approximately 27 (Goonatilake et al, 2001; Henkanaththegedara et al., 2005). 

The Bellanwil-Attidiya Sanctuary is located within the upper catchments of the Bolgoda river basin (Henkanaththegedara et al., 2005). It comprises of marshes, mosaic shallow freshwater ponds, canals, seasonally flooded grasslands, scrublands, paddy fields, and scattered pockets of shrubs and small trees (Goonatilake et al, 2001; Karunarathna et al., 2009). The marshes are extending in an area of about 372 hectares and bounded by a swiftly developing urban landscape (Wickramasinghe et al., 2012). It provides a habitat for a large number of faunas including fishes, waterfowls, tetrapod, serpentoid reptiles, several mammals, and butterflies (Henkanaththegedara et al., 2005).

Bellanwila Attidiya Sanctuary Bellanwila Attidiya Sanctuary .
2) Birds at Attidiya by Sandaru senitha is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
3) Attidiya wetland by Sandaru senitha is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

References
1) Cooray, S.K., Piyadasa, R.U. and Wickramasinghe, D., 2012. Spatial variability of soil characteristics along a landscape gradient in Bellanwila-Attidiya area. Journal of Tropical Forestry and Environment, 2(1). pp.61-62.
2) Goonatilake, W.D.A., Perera, L.J.K.R. and Gabadage, D.E., 2001. Amphibians of Bellanwila-Attidiya Sanctuary. Loris, Journal of the Wildlife and Nature Protection Society of Sri Lanka, 22(5), pp.10-14.
3) Green, M.J.B. ed., 1990. IUCN directory of South Asian protected areas. IUCN. pp.196-197.
4) Henkanaththegedara, S.M., Herath, B.J., and Korala, D.J., 2005. Butterfly fauna of Bellanwila-Attidiya Sanctuary and its environs, Colombo district in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka Naturalist, 7(1&2), pp.1-6.
5) Karunarathna, D.S., Amarasinghe, A.T., Gabadage, D.E., Bahir, M.M. and Harding, L.E., 2009. Current status of faunal diversity in Bellanwila–Attidiya sanctuary, Colombo District-Sri Lanka. fauna and flora, 7, p.49.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 24 October 2020
For a complete tourist map follow this link: Lankapradeepa Tourist Map

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