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Location India, Chhattisgarh
Central coordinates 82o 4.50' East  20o 10.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A3
Area 80,096 ha
Altitude 327 - 736m
Year of IBA assessment 2004

Bombay Natural History Society

Site description The Udanti (24,760 ha) and Sitanadi (55,336 ha) wildlife sanctuaries derive their name from the rivers Udanti and Sitanadi which flow through the respective sanctuaries and form the lifeline of this IBA. They are located in the Brindanawagarh tehsil of Raipur district, and Sihawa-Nagri tehsil of Dhamtari district respectively. Udanti Sanctuary is situated 210 km and Sitanadi Sanctuary is situated 175 km southeast of Raipur. The eastern boundary of Udanti Sanctuary is the interstate boundary between Chhattisgarh and Orissa. The distance between the two sanctuaries is about 30 km, with a corridor of good forest cover. Both these sanctuaries form a compact forest for free movement of wildlife, particularly the Wild Buffalo Bubalus arnee (=bubalis) which is the State Mammal. As they are close to each other, and the bird fauna is very similar, we consider them as one IBA. The forest types are Dry Tropical Peninsular Sal Forest and Southern Tropical Dry Deciduous Mixed Forest. The dominant species is Sal Shorea robusta, mixed with species of Terminalia, Anogeissus, Pterocarpus, and Bamboo. Teak Tectona grandis is also found. In Udanti, Sal forest covers about 34%, miscellaneous forest occupies 61.55% and Teak covers 4.4% (Gabrial 1995). Teak has been introduced into the area by the Forest Department.

Key Biodiversity 

AVIFAUNA: More than 125 bird species have been recorded till now (A .M. K. Bharos pers. comm. 2003) but there could be many more. No systematic study on avifuana has been done in this IBA, which lies in Biome-11 and represents Indo-Malayan Tropical Dry Zone. There are not many threatened or endemic species. The site has been selected on the basis of presence of the Vulnerable Green Munia Amandava formosa, which has suffered severe decline due to habitat destruction and illegal trapping (BirdLife International, 2001). Udanti and Sitanadi Sanctuaries could form its stronghold, where its chances of long-term survival are good. Moreover, as they are protected areas, illegal trapping for bird trade could be controlled. Once the Green Munia’s exact habitat requirements are known through research, habitat manipulation could be attempted in this IBA to increase habitat availability. The two Critically Endangered Gyps species of vultures are quite widespread even now. Out of the 59 Biome-11 species listed by BirdLife International (2001), 27 have been seen in this IBA.

OTHER KEY FAUNA: Along with the Indravati Tiger Reserve (another IBA), Udanti and Sitanadi are important refuges for the last few herds of the highly endangered Wild Buffalo. The Tiger Panthera tigris and Leopard P. pardus are at the top of the food pyramid of fauna. Indian Wild Dog Cuon alpinus is another important carnivore, which mainly hunts Chital Axis axis, Sambar Cervus unicolor, Nilgai Boselaphus tragocamelus, Four-horned Antelope Tetracerus quadricornis, Chinkara Gazella bennettii, Barking Deer or Indian Muntjak Muntiacus muntjak, and Wild Boar Sus scrofa and young Gaur Bos frontalis. Sloth Bear Melursus ursinus is quite common, and often mauls villagers. Smaller carnivores include the Jungle Cat Felis chaus, Striped Hyena Hyaena hyaena, Wolf Canis lupus, and Golden Jackal Canis aureus. Not much is known about the reptilian and amphibian fauna of this IBA.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
White-rumped Vulture Gyps bengalensis non-breeding  2004  present  A1, A3  Critically Endangered 
Indian Vulture Gyps indicus non-breeding  2004  present  A1  Critically Endangered 
Green Avadavat Amandava formosa resident  2004  present  A1, A3  Vulnerable 

IBA Monitoring

2013 high favourable medium
Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data

Human intrusions and disturbance war, civil unrest and military exercises happening now majority/most of area/population (50-90%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Transportation and service corridors roads and railroads happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium

Forest   0 0 good (> 90%) good (> 90%) favourable

Whole area of site (>90%) covered by appropriate conservation designation  A comprehensive and appropriate management plan exists that aims to maintain or improve the populations of qualifying bird species  Some limited conservation initiatives are in place  medium 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Sitanadi Sanctuary 55,336 protected area contained by site 55,336  
Udanti Sanctuary 24,760 protected area contained by site 24,760  

Local conservation groups The local conservation group below is working to support conservation at this IBA.

Name Year formed
Udanti-Sitanadi SSG 0


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest   -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research -
Notes: Nature conservation and research
tourism/recreation -
Notes: Tourism and recreation
urban/industrial/transport -
Notes: Human settlement

Acknowledgements Key contributor: A. M. K. Bharos.


BirdLife International (2001) Threatened Birds of Asia: The BirdLife International Red Data Book. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

Gabrial, M. S. (1995) Working Plan of Udanti Wildlife Sanctuary. Wildlife Division, Raipur.

Kotwal, P. C., Naik, M. L. and. Mishra, R. P. (2002) Indian Wild Buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) an endangered species: Habitat and Diurnal Activity Pattern in Udanti Wildlife Sanctuary. Cheetal 41(3 & 4): 19-28.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Udanti and Sitanadi Wildlife Sanctuaries. Downloaded from on 26/10/2016

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife