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1.1 Introduction
Brief ethnographic descriptions of Yeravas are found in several published works such as Memoir of the Codugu Survey Vol. II by Connor (1870), Ethnographical Compendium on the Castes and Tribes found in the Province of Coorg by Richter (1887),"Coorgs and Yeruvas" by Holland (1901). The Coorg Tribes and Castes by L.A. Krishna Iyer (1948) and Archaeology o.f Coorg by K.K. Subbayya (1978). Here brief ethnographic description of Yeravas based mainly on the data collected and analyzed by this investigator is presented.
1.1.1 Kodagu
The Yeravas are an important tribe of Kodagu district popularly known as Coorg district. The Kodagu district is the smallest district in Karnataka and is situated in the Southern part of Karnataka. It is small both in area and in population.
This Kodugu district of 4104 square kilometres area is situated between 11°56' and 12°50' North Latitude and 75°22' and 76°12' East Longitude. The maximum length of the district from North to South is 96 kilometres and maximum breadth from East to West is 64 kilometres. Within this area Yerava population is concentrated in the region between 11°56' and 12°15' North Latitude, and 75°45' and 76°12' East Longitude.
The four Nads that come within this area are (see Map 1) Srimangala Nad, Ponnampet Nad, Ammatti Nad and Virarajapet Nad. Out of these four Nads, the Yerava population is concentrated mostly in Srimangala Nad, Ammatti Nad and Ponnampet Nad. This district is bound in North by Hassan district, in East by Mysore district, in West by South Canara district of Kamataka. And in South it is bound by Cannanore district of Kerala State. In South, Bramhagiri hills serves as a natural boundary between Kodagu district and Kerala State.
1.1.2 Mountains
The Kodagu district is known as the district of mountains and forests. The Bramhagiri hills of South, the Bramhagiri hills of North and Pushpagiri hills of North West are some of tlle important hills to mention. The highest mountain is Tadiyandamole with the height of 5729' from the mean sea level. There are two types of forests in Kodugu. The male ka:u and kaive ka:u, namely, the forests of mountains and the forests of valleys and lower hills. The Madikeri (Mercara) town, the head quarters of the district, is 3809' above the sea level. The four Nads mentioned earlier are on the plateau of South Bramhagiri hills. Srimangala, Ponnampet, Virarajapet and Ammatti are at a height of 2782', 2811', 2981', and 3061' from the sea level.
The Kodagu district experiences three seasonal winds. The West wind, the North-East wind, the South-West wind, during monsoon, after monsoon and during the rest of the year respectively.
The average maximum temperature of the district is 28.6°C or 83.5°F and the average minimum temperature is 17.8°C or 64.0°F. The Kodagu district has an average rainfall of 2725.5 mm annually and the Virarajapet taluk has an average rainfall of 2671.8 mm annually.
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