The BiligiriRangaswamy Temple Wildlife Sanctuary (BRT) is located between 11–13´ N latitude and 77–78´ E longitude in the southeast corner of Chamarajanagara district in the state of Karnataka, India. The sanctuary is a confluence of the Western and Eastern Ghats, with a number of hills with an average elevation of about 1350 m. The annual rainfall is 1362 ± 159 mm.

Ramesh (1989) broadly categorized the vegetation into five forest types: 61.1% dry deciduous forest, 28.2% scrub jungle, 6.5% evergreen forest, 3.8% savanna, and 0.8% shola. The BRT is rich in biodiversity, with 776 species of higher plants, more than 36 mammals, excluding bats and rodents, 245 species of birds, and 145 species of butterflies. The area has significant populations of elephant, tiger, gaur, sambar deer, barking deer, mouse deer, and spotted deer.

The Soligas are an indigenous tribal community who live in the BRT. Approximately 6000 Soligas live in forest villages called podus (tribal settlements). Traditionally, the Soligas were hunters and shifting cultivators and collected a wide range of non-timber forest products (NTFP). When the BRT area was designated a wildlife sanctuary in 1972, shifting cultivation and hunting were completely banned, and the Soligas were allocated small pieces of land to practice settled agriculture. The Soligas retained the sole right to NTFP extraction under the aegis of tribal cooperatives called Large-Scale Adivasi Multi-Purpose Societies (LAMPS). Extraction of NTFP is a major source of income for the Soligas.