Amaravathi Reservoir at Amaravathi nagar, 25 km (16 mi) south on SH 17 from Udumalpet, is located in Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary and National Park in Tirupur district, Tamil Nadu, India. The reservoir was created by the steep Amaravathi Dam built across the Amaravathi River.
The largest wild breeding population of crocodiles in South India live in the reservoir, and in the Chinnar, Thennar and Pambar rivers that drain into it. These broad-snouted mugger crocodiles, also known as marsh crocodiles and Persian crocodiles, are the most common and widespread of the three species of crocodiles found in India. They eat fish, other reptiles, small and large mammals and are sometimes dangerous to humans. Their total wild population here is currently estimated to be 60 adults and 37 sub-adults. Other fish predators here include: Oriental small-clawed otters, Indian cormorants and Indian flap-shelled turtles.
The Amaravathi Sagar Crocodile Farm, established in 1976, the largest crocodile nursery in India, is 1 kilometre before the Amaravathy dam site. Many adult crocodiles have been reintroduced from here into the wild. Eggs are collected from wild nests along the perimeter of the reservoir to be hatched and reared at the farm. Many crocodiles of all sizes can be seen basking in the sun and suddenly making a stride or piled up on one another. There are now 98 crocodiles (25 male + 73 female) maintained in captivity here. Three Forest Department personnel manage and maintain the centre.
Information for Visitor’s
There is a well laid-out park where one may climb steep steps on the dam to have a picturesque view north of the plains below and south to the Anaimalai Hills and Palani Hills above. This place is being developed as a District Excursion Centre for tourism.
The park and crocodile farm are open every day from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Entry fees are 50 paise per adult and 25 paise per child (below 12 years).
Travel by road From Coimbatore – via Pollachi and Udumalpet to Amaravathy nagar is 96 km (60 mi).
Accommodation is available with advance reservation, at a forest rest house near the crocodile farm.