In mid 2018, EFL conducted a crowdfunding campaign to gather donations to support our court cases filed to protect Sri Lanka’s largest national park, Wilpattu. Followed by the generous donations received, EFL is currently in the process of preparing a video to shed light on the threats faced by Wipattu National Park and allocating funds to support the ongoing court cases.
Visit campaign page https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/help-save-sri-lanka-s-largest-national-park#/
The WNP is the oldest and largest National Park on the island. It was declared as a National Park in 1938 under the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance of Sri Lanka. The adjoining Forest Reserves and Sanctuaries, containing a diverse range of habitats including forests, coastal, marine and wetlands, form a flourishing ecosystem supporting a number of fauna and flora.
A total of 284 faunal species belonging to 101 families have been recorded within the WNP, with 21 endemic and 30 nationally threatened species among them. The elephant (Elephas maximus), sloth bear (Melursus ursinus), and leopard (Panthera pardus kotiya) are some of the threatened mammals found in this protected area.
In 2013, Wilpattu was also declared as a Ramsar Wetland Cluster, which encompasses the entire park (Willu-pattu meaning ‘Land of Lakes’). Some 205 water bodies, both natural and manmade, have been identified within the boundary of the park.
Located 30km west of Anuradhapura, the boundaries of the park lie in the administrative divisions of Puttalam, Anuradhapura and Mannar and spans across the North Central and North Western Provinces of the island.
Unfortunately, at present, these priceless natural resources are facing severe threats, a result of multiple anthropogenic activities. Since EFL’s first case on WNP was taken up in 2010, we have been investigating several issues relating to the WNP ranging from deforestation, encroachment to illegal projects within the park.
Illegally constructed road though the Wilpattu National Park https://efl.lk/portfolio/illegal-road-through-wilpattu-national-park/
The Pallekandhal Church, a jungle shrine located within the WNP https://efl.lk/portfolio/pallekhandal-church-within-wilpattu-national-park/
Pukkulam Village bordering the WNP https://efl.lk/portfolio/pukkulam-village-bordering-the-wilpattu-national-park-wnp/