Sri Lanka is in the Indian Ocean southwest of the Bay of Bengal, and is separated from the Indian subcontinent by the Gulf of Mannar and Palk Strait. The climate is tropical and warm, due to the moderating effects of ocean winds. Sri Lanka's mangrove ecosystem spans over 7,000 hectares and played a vital role in buffering the force of the waves in the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Lying within the Indomalaya ecozone, Sri Lanka is one of 25 biodiversity hotspots in the world. Although the country is relatively small in size, it has the highest biodiversity density in Asia. A remarkably high proportion of the species among its flora and fauna, 27% of the 3,210 flowering plants and 22% of the mammals, are endemic. Among the trees of the dry-land forests are valuable species such as satinwood, ebony, ironwood, mahogany and teak. The wet zone is a tropical evergreen forest with tall trees, broad foliage, and a dense undergrowth of vines and creepers. Subtropical evergreen forests resembling those of temperate climates flourish in the higher altitudes. The total vegetation density, including trees, shrubs, herbs and seedlings, has been estimated at 240,000 individuals per hectare. Sri Lanka has declared 24 wildlife reserves, which are home to a wide range of native species such as Asian elephants, leopards, sloth bears, the unique small loris, a variety of deer, the purple-faced langur, the endangered wild boar, porcupines and Indian pangolins (Wikipedia).