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The Madayipara hills in Kannur District of Kerala, is perhaps one of the most remarkable Laterite Hillocks of North Malabar. The Laterite System is spread over 365 ha, comprising of a flat-topped table like hill, surrounded by the rivers of Kuppam, Ramapuram and Peruvamba, as well as the Kawayi backwaters adjacent to the Lakshadweep Sea. The view from the Southeastern part of the hill is picturesque, attracting tourists to the area.
Since 1985, we initiated recording, month wise, the bird census data in and around Madayipara. We also made notes on flora, fauna and the human interferences in the area. We found that this comparatively barren Laterite System provide a variety of habitats for many animals and plants during the wet season (June to November) and the temporary pools formed during the wet season serve as invaluable bird refuges, which apparently also functions as staging points for the migratory birds arriving from the Himalaya and Palaearctic countries. Many migratory birds have been found to be over-wintering here.
The Madayipara acts as a good watershed area providing good drinking water to the surrounding populations, in an area otherwise prone to saline water intrusion. Through this work, we have explored the ecology and the biotic potential (both flora and fauna) that the Laterite Hills of North Malabar in Kerala possess, especially at Madayipara.