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.

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The Malnad Home Garden and Seed Exchange Collective, Sirsi was a spin-off of a Kalpavriksh Conservation Education (CE) project funded by FES, and came into being in 2001 with the NBSAP Biodiversity Mela in Sirsi. While the project itself looked at the sort of  CE inputs that would  work in the ecologically and culturally very unique Malnad region of Karnataka’s Western Ghats, the seed collective initiative began as a non-formal way of learning and involving women as vital sources of information and teaching right from their homes.

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