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Fascinating list of India’s 18 Biosphere Reserves

India is home to 18 Biosphere Reserves (BRs). The reserves are representative parts of natural and cultural landscapes extending over large area of terrestrial or coastal/marine ecosystems. Globally there are 621 BRs from 117 countries included so far.
The national Government is responsible for nominating Biosphere Reserves (BRs) if they meet a minimal set of criteria and adhere to minimal set of conditions under the Man and Biosphere Reserve Programme of UNESCO. Biosphere Reserves (BRs) are special environments for both people and the nature and are living examples of how human beings and nature can peacefully co-exist and respect each other’s needs.
1. Cold Desert
7,770sqkm
Designated on 28.08.2009
Part of Pin Valley National Park and surroundings; Chandratal & Sarchu; and Kibber Wildlife sanctuary in Himachal Pradesh.
Key fauna include Snow Leopard
2.  Nanda Devi
 5860.69sqk
Designated on 18.01.1988
Part of Chamoli, Pithoragarh and Almora districts in Uttarakhand.
Key fauna include Himalayan Snow Leopard
3. Khangchendzonga
2931.12sqkm
Designated on 07.02.2000
Part of North and West districts in Sikkim.
Key fauna include Snow Leopard, Red Panda
4. Dehang-Dibang
5111.5sqkm
Designated on 02.09.1998
Part of Upper Siang, West Siang and Dibang Valley districts in Arunachal Pradesh.
Key fauna include red panda, binturong
5. Manas
2837sqkm
Designated on 14.03.1989
Part of Kokrajhar, Bongaigaon, Barpeta, Nalbari, Kamprup and Darang districts in A
Key fauna include Golden Langur, Red Pa
6. Nokrek
820 sqkm
Designated on 01.09.1988
Part of East, West and South Garo Hill districts in Meghalaya.
Key fauna include Red Panda
7. Dibru-Saikhova
765sqkm
Designated on   28.07.1997
Part of Dibrugarh and Tinsukia districts in Assam.
Key fauna include Golden Langur
8. Panna
2998.98sqkm
Designated on   25.08.2011
Part of Panna and Chhattarpur districts in Madhya Pradesh
Key fauna include Tiger, Chital, Chinkara, Sambhar and Sloth Bear
9. Kachchh
12,454sqkm
Designated on29.01.2008
Part of Kachchh, Rajkot, Surendranagar and Patan districts in Gujarat.
Key fauna include  Indian Wild Ass
10. Pachmarhi
4981.72sqkm
Designated on03.03.1999
Part of Betul, Hoshangabad and Chhindwara districts in Madhya Pradesh.
Key fauna include Giant Squirrel, Flying Squirrel
11.  Achanakmar- Amarkantak
3,835.51 sqkm
Designated on 30.03.2005
Part of Anuppur and Dindori districts of Madhya Pradesh and Bilaspur district of Chattisgarh.
Key fauna include Leopards, gaur, chital
12. Sunderban
9630sqkm
Designated on 29.03.1989
Part of delta of Ganges & Brahamaputra river system in West Bengal.
Key fauna include Royal Bengal Tiger
13. Similipal
4374sqkm
Designated on 21.06.1994
Part of Mayurbhanj district in Orissa.
Key fauna include Gaur, Royal Bengal Tiger, Wild Elephant
14. Seshachalam
4755.997sqkm
Designated on   20.09.2010
Part of Seshachalam hill ranges in Eastern Ghats encompassing part of Chittoor and Kadapa
districts in Andhra Pradesh.
Key fauna include Wild Dog, Golden Jackal, Indian Fox, Jungle Cat, Sloth Bear
15. Nilgiri
5520 sqkm
Designated on 01.08.1986
Part of Wynad, Nagarhole, Bandipur and
Madumalai, Nilambur, Silent Valley and
Siruvani hills in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and
Karnataka.
Key fauna include Nilgiri Tahr, Lion-tailed macaque
16.  Agasthyamalai
3500.36sqkm
Designated on   12.11.2001
Part of Thirunelveli and Kanyakumari districts in Tamil Nadu and Thiruvanthapuram, Kollam
and Pathanmthitta districts in Kerala.
Key fauna include Nilgiri Tahr, Elephants
17. Gulf of Mannar
10500sqkm
Designated on 18.02.1989
Part of Gulf of Mannar extending from Rameswaram island in the North to Kanyakumari in      the South of Tamil Nadu.
Key fauna include Dugong or Sea Cow
18. Great Nicobar
885sqkm
Designated on 06.01.1989
Southernmost island of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Key fauna include Saltwater Crocodile

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