To protect our Wildlife we must conserve our Wilderness and for our Wilderness to be meaningful our Wildlife must be able to roam free within it.
Forest Types Found Within the Island of Sri Lanka
Forest Classification Characteristics (Annual Avg.) Approximate Extent (Sq. km) On Island Districts Containing Forest Type *
Montane Forest Above 1500 m elevation Temperatures ~ 15 ° C Rainfall > 1800 mm with no moisture deficit period 31 Nuwera Eliya
Kandy
Badulla
Matale
Ratnapura
Sub-Montane Forest Within elevations of 1000 m to 1500 Temperatures 15 ° – 20 ° C Rainfall > 1800 mm 690 Nuwera Eliya
Ratnapura
Kandy
Matale
Badulla
Kegalle
Matara
Anuradhapura
Monaragala
Lowland Rain Forest Extending from the Coastal plains to 1000 m Temperatures > 20 ° C Rainfall > 2500 mm no moisture deficit period Vegetation –visible lichen and liana species 1,415 Ratnapura
Kalutara
Galle
Matara
Kandy
Matale
Kegalle
Nuwera Eliya
Colombo
Badulla
Monaragala
Gampaha
Moist Monsoon Forest Found at < 1000 m Rainfall 1800 – 2500 mm with a peak from October – January with a dry period of 3 months following. 2,439 Monaragala
Polonnaruwa
Ampara
Matale
Badulla
Batticaloa
Ratnapura
Kandy
Nuwera Eliya
Matara
Kurunagala
Hambantota
Gampaha
Trincomalee
Dry Monsoon Forest Has a distinct season: a rainfall peak from mid October to January (coinciding with monsoon rains) and a dry period for 3-6 months. Vegetation is semi diciduouse. At elevations of < 600 m often on slopes.

Rainfall 1000 – 1800 mm

10,940 Anuradhapura
Mullaitivu
Monaragala
Mannar
Trincomalee
Vavuniya
Puttalam
Ampara
Polonnaruwa
Killinochchi
Battocaloa
Hambantota
Matale
Kurunagala
Ratnapura
Badulla
Jaffna
Matara
Riverine Dry Forest Found along flood plains and river valleys. < 600 m Rainfall 1000 – 1800 mm 224 Ampara
Monaragala
Hambantota
Trincomalee
Puttalam
Mannar
Polonnaruwa
Mangrove Forest Present along intertidal sheltered coastlines, usually associated with river mouths and lagoons. Vegetation usually consisting of Rhyzophora species 87 Puttalam
Trincomalee
Batticaloa
Mannar
Hambantota
Mullaitivu
Killinochchi
Ampara
Jaffna
Galle
Gampaha
Kalutara
Matara

* Districts are listed in order of highest hectare of forest type cover

Sparse forests totaling ~ 4,638 Sq. km are spread out throughout the island within all 25 districts. With Anuradhapura, Monaragala, Mullaitivu, Ampara, Polonnaruwa, Trincomalee, Mannar and Vavuniya having the highest concentrations.

Source: H.M Bandaratillaka. 1997. Arujana’s Atlas of Sri Lanka.

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