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Young Biologists' Association Environment Sri Lanka
Information on Sri Lankan Environment, Bio-diversity, Eco-tourism,
and Forestry
Environment Day 2000 activities
at University of Sri Jayewardenepura
aims at promoting Biology, environmental conservation and management.
Despite its relatively small size, Sri Lanka possesses a high level of bio-diversity. Details can be found in this section
Explore natural beauty of this Indian Ocean Island in our Eco-tourism pages

For more information on Sri Lankan Forestry and Environment check Department of Forestry and Environmental Science, University of Sri Jayewardenepura web site

Read Forestry and Environmental Science research papers presented at Annual Symposium

Institute of Biology (IOB) is a leading professional body of Biologists in Sri Lanka. The key objective of IOB is to promote and advance the Science of Biology and its application in Sri Lanka.

For updated information, please visit our site at

Sri Lanka - Environmental Background

Sri Lanka is an island in the Indian Ocean.

Location: Latitude 5'55" - 5'51" Longitude 79'42" - 81'52"
Length: 432Km, Width: 224Km, Area: 65,610Sq.Km.

Capital: Sri Jayewardenepura,
Commercial Center: Colombo
International Airport: Colombo (Katunayake)
International Seaport: Colombo

Literacy Rate: 87%+, Total Population: 18 million
Population growth rate: 1.2% Life expectancy: 68 (male), 73 (Female)
Languages: Sinhala, Tamil, English

The chief determinants of Climate in Sri Lanka are rainfall and temperature. The rainfall shows seasonal fluctuations and is dependent on the South east and North east monsoons and on convectional and syclonic effects. The mean temperature in the lowland areas is 27 C in the wet region and 30 C in the dry zone. It decreases with increase in altitude and in the montane region the mean monthly temperature varies from 13 C to 16 C, with the night temperature occasionally dropping to around zero.

The southern half of the island is dominated by beautiful and rugged hill country. The entire northern half comprises a large plain extending from the edge of the hill country to the Jaffna peninsula. The highest mountain is the 2524m Mt Pidurutalagala near Nuwara Eliya and the longest river is the Mahaweli which courses from the centre and empties into the Indian Ocean at Trincomalee. The best beaches are on the south-western, southern and south-eastern coasts.

Large evergreen trees and spectacular orchids are found in the dense south-western tropical rain forests. Hardy grasslands, rhododendrons and stunted forests predominate in the cool, damp highlands, and shrubs and grasslands survive in arid zones in the north. Animal life is profuse and includes the ubiquitous elephant, as well as leopards, deer, monkeys, sloth bears, wild boar, cobras, crocodiles, dugong and turtles. The island is an important seasonal home to migrating birds, including flamingoes, who flock to the lagoons, wetlands and bird sanctuaries for respite from the northern winter. The best time to see birds is between January and April.