Bloomed to become a fabulous Eco-diversity, Chandaka- Dampara forest, near Bhubaneswar represents the north-eastern limits of Eastern Ghats. This is now an isolated forest, which once formed a part of vast Eastern Ghats forest and Central Indian Elephant range.
The area was once a stronghold of tiger, until 60s; when the last tiger embraced captivity in 1967. It fell inside an open air enclosure in Nandankanan Zoo. The forests once teemed with tiger, leopard, Sambar, Barking deer, Chital, Wild Boar, Gaur and other wild animals. With the establishment of state capital at Bhubaneswar in 1957, this forest came under enormous pressure for firewood, and timber. Consequently, forests deteriorated significantly and elephants, which were in harmony with their habitat became problematic.
The year 1982, was a turning point in the conservation history of the area, when state Govt. constituted this forest as a wildlife sanctuary for overall protection of the then gasping forest ecosystem more particularly, to provide a safe haven for resident elephants.
The details of external boundary of Chandaka-Dampara wildlife sanctuary have been described in Govt. Notification No.13482/FFAH dtd.10.06.1988 which was published in Orissa Gazette Extra ordinary No.21 Dtd 07.01.1994.This can also be described in short as follows:
- North: Upper Pathapur, Gayalbanka, Bhagipur, Banra, Garsar, Samantarapur
- South: K.Muktapur, Nuapara, Gomeriah, Doria, Manpur, Mandalpur, Minchinpatna, Majena, Mahula, Angarapara, Madhapur, Aranga, Kumarabasta,Paniora, Palaspur, Ghatibar, Binjhagiri,Jamujhari, Haridamada, Kalajhar,Kalapada Sahi, Manei Sahi, Kantabada, Daspur, Bhola, Jagannath Prasad, Andharua, Nayapalli
- West: Balisahi, Baghaitangi, Gadahaldia, Samantarapur, Talabasta,Hamira, Purunasahi, Govindpur, Dampara
- East: Baranga, Daruthenga, Chandaka, Sundarpur, Barmana, Pathargarh
Chandaka-Dampara forests formed parts of erstwhile Puri Forest Division. Forest blocks of Khurda (old Puri District) have been notified as R.Fs. or D.P.Fs.
The sanctuary notifications have been issued as under:
- 8F(W) 16/82. 22569/FFAH, dated 16.08.1982
- 8F(W) 16/82. 35500/FFAH, dated 21.12.1982
- 8F (N)-4/88. 13482/FFAH , dated 10.6.1988