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Location India, Tamil Nadu
Central coordinates 76o 52.00' East  11o 25.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A2
Area 116 ha
Altitude 0
Year of IBA assessment 2004

Bombay Natural History Society

Site description Longwood is located in the Nilgiris district, at the extreme northwest end of Tamil Nadu on the interstate boundaries with Karnataka and Kerala. In this site, the only major pocket of natural Shola remaining is in the immediate vicinity of Kothagiri village. Though relatively small, it is highly important to the whole Kothagiri region as it harbours a variety of endemic flora and fauna. It is also one of the key areas for the conservation of the Rufousbreasted or Nilgiri Laughingthrush Garrulax cachinnans, Whitebellied Shortwing Brachypteryx major and the Nilgiri Wood- Pigeon Columba elphinstonii, listed as Endangered or Vulnerable by BirdLife International (2001). Though it has a history of encroachments and habitat loss, this IBA has ultimately been given much needed protection, with the active involvement of an enlightened group of local residents, named Longwood Shola Watchdog Committee. Like the other sholas of the Nilgiris, Longwood is also classified as Southern Montane Wet Temperate Forest by Champion and Seth (1968). Tall trees of up to 20 m are still seen in this shola. Species comprising such sholas are evergreen and include Actinodaphne bourneae, Ilex denticulata, Litsea wightiana, Michelia nilagirica, Microtropis ramiflora, Pithecellobium subcoriaceum, Symplocos pendula and Syzygium arnottianum, Eurya nitida, Photina notoniana, Ternstroemia japonica, Berberis tinctoria, Heydotis stylosa, Leucas suffruticosa and Smithia blanda. Many species of Himalayan affinity are found here, like in the whole of the Nilgiris. Tea plantations surround this site.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Nilgiri Woodpigeon Columba elphinstonii resident  2004  present  A1, A2  Vulnerable 
Malabar Grey Hornbill Ocyceros griseus 2004  present  A2  Least Concern 
Grey-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus priocephalus 2004  present  A2  Near Threatened 
Black-chinned Laughingthrush Strophocincla cachinnans resident  2004  present  A1, A2  Endangered 
Nilgiri Blue Robin Myiomela major resident  2004  present  A1, A2  Endangered 
Black-and-rufous Flycatcher Ficedula nigrorufa resident  2004  present  A2  Near Threatened 
Nilgiri Flycatcher Eumyias albicaudatus resident  2004  present  A2  Near Threatened 
White-bellied Blue-flycatcher Cyornis pallipes 2004  present  A2  Least Concern 
Crimson-backed Sunbird Nectarinia minima 2004  present  A2  Least Concern 


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

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
forestry -
Notes: Forestry
nature conservation and research -
Notes: Conservation
water management -
Notes: Water catchment

Acknowledgements Key contributor: The IBA Team.


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

BirdLife International (undated) Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in Asia: Project briefing book. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K. Unpublished.

Champion, H. G. and Seth, S. K. (1968) A revised survey of forest types of India. Govt. of India Press, Delhi.

Zarri, A. A., Rahmani, A. R. and Senthilmurugan, S. (2002) Ecology of Shola and Alpine Grasslands. Annual report. 2 Part 1. Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Longwood Shola - Kothagiri. Downloaded from on 23/09/2014

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