Established in 1976, Shivapuri National Park is divided into:
a) protected area of 97.37 km2 and
b) additional 118.64 km2 area managed as buffer zone.
This watershed area is a true representation of the Middle hills in the protected area system. It also provides over 40% of the drinking water to the Kathmandu Valley. It has high diversity of forest types (sal, subtropical hardwood, lower slopes mixed hardwood, chir pine, oak and upper slope mixed hardwood) which occupy 39% of the land where 16 endemic plants occur. A total of 129 species of mushroom, 150 species of butterflies with many endemic and rare 9 species of birds which are considered endangered or vulnerable, and 19 species of mammals occur. This area is increasingly used for recreation, hiking and trekking as some 1,500 Kathmandu residents and some 3,000 non-residents visit every year. Large mammals incur substantial losses to settlements living in the buffer zone. As of now, depletion of vegetation through fuelwood, fodder and livestock grazing is considered a major threat as some 4,246 households use forest products.