130.78sq. km. of Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary was notified by the state government of Maharashtra in 1985, under the Wildlife Protection Act 1972. The sanctuary is situated on the crest of Western Ghats that is recognised as one of the 12-biodiversity hotspots of the world. The sanctuary harbours large diversity of endemic & specialised flora and fauna. Sanctuary is home to the state animal of Maharashtra- Ratufa indica elphistonii, sub species of the Indian Giant squirrel that is one of three threatened Indo-Malyan squirrel species.