Singhalila National Park

Singhalila National Park lies in the extreme north-west of Darjeeling district. It is bounded by Rabonglia Khola in Sikkim in the north and Nepal in the west and south. The Singhalila ridge rises from Maneybhanjyang and links Tonglu, Sandakphu, and Phalut in Darjeeling district, continues higher into Singhalila National Park. It then joins the Khangchendzonga Biosphere Reserve in Sikkim. The National Park supports lower temperate forest, evergreen broadleaf forests, upper temperate Tsuga dumosa forest, sub-alpine conifer forest, and bamboo.

General Information:

Landscape: Kangchenjunga Protected Area Type: National Park
Established Year: 1992 Area: 79 sq. km.

Geographical Features:

Country: India
District(s): Darjeeling
Latitude:
Min: 27.03054302049 Max: 27.22067874443
Longitude:
Min: 87.98790491978 Max: 88.07870104262
Altitude:
From: 2400 meter To: 3660 meter
Average rainfall (m): Maximum rainfall is received in May, June and August, about 330 m
Climate: Mean temperature in summer varies between 7 to 17degree celcius. The winter is extremely cold and extend from November to March. The hottest month is from April till June. Average relative humidity varies from 83% to 96%

Biodiversity Features:

Province: Himalayan Highlands
Biomes: Mixed mountain systems
Vegetation: Forest types include Sub-alpine Rhododendron forest, Fir-Hemlock-Oak Mixed forest, Oak forest and Moist Temperate forest. There are upper temperate Tsuga dumosa foest, subalpine conifer forest and bamboo which tends to colonize slopes where the forests have been destroyed by fire. Approximately 450 flowering plants. 14 species of Rhododendrons have been recorded. Dominant trees are Quercus sp., Castanopsis sp., Ilex sp., Betula utilis, Abies densa, Tsuga brunoniana and Acer sp. Various species of Rhododendron occur. Species of Primula, Anemone, Aconitum, Cotoneaster and abundant species of Arundinaria are found. It is also very rich in Lichens, Moss, Liverwort, Orchids, Ferns and extremely rich in medicinal plants such as Aconitum ferox, A. luridum, A. palimatum, Anemone obtusiloba, Aralia bipinnatifida, Arisaema grifithi, Avalia pseudoginseng, Berberis aristata, Bupleurum candollii, Heracleum wallichii, Potentill fulgens, Rheum accuminata, Rhododendron arboreum, R. cinnabarium, R. lepidotum, Rosa serecta, Skimmia laureola, Swertia Bimaculata, S. chirata, Taxus baccata


Socioeconomic Features:

Community Structure: There are about 45 forest villages (Khasmahal) in the periphery of the park. Total number of the households is unknown
EthnicGroup:
Natural Heritage:
Cultural Significance: The area commands view of series of mountain ranges culminating in world's highest peaks such as Mount Everest, Mt. Lhotse, Mt. Makalu and Mt. Kangchenjunga
Livelihood strategies: The residents are mostly landless or marginal farmers, who make a living by subsistence agriculture and primitive animal husbandry. They also augment their source of income by illegally collecting firewood for the purpose of selling in the market. Ecotourism is also developing gradually.


Conservation Management:

IUCN Category: II - National Park
Natural area of land and/or sea, designated to (a) protect the ecological integrity of one or more ecosystems for present and future generations, (b) exclude exploitation or occupation inimical to the purposes of designation of the area and (c) provide a foundation for spiritual, scientific, educational, recreational and visitor opportunities, all of which must be environmentally and culturally compatible.
Management Authority: Wildlife Division I of the Forest Department, Government of West Bengal
Park Head Quarter: Darjeeling
Conservation History: The Singhalila forest that was purchased by the British Government from Sikkim Durbar in the year 1882. It was notified as reserve forest forming the part of Darjeeling Forest Division in 1986. In 1992 the reserve forest was declared as Singhalila National Park under the administrative control of WlidLife Division -I
Conservation Challenges: Habitat degradation, unplanned tourism, crop and livestock depredation due to park wildlife, grazing by livestock, illegal collection of non-timber forest products, and forest fires
Conservation Efforts: The park is divided into 2 Ranges, 4 Beats, and 9 Blocks for administrative purposes; and it is back-stopped by the Division Office located in Darjeeling. The major activities are specified in its five year management plan, which includes planting trees in open and burnt spaces, patrolling park on a regular basis, and conducting wildlife censuses of major species found in the park.
Transboundary Features: Cross border areas are inhabitated by people, regional cooperation is essential to secure biodiversity through different conservation proactices across the border
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  • HKH Boundary