The pleasant environs of the Hirakud Lake supporting a mixed deciduous forest provide a natural habitat to a variety of wildlife in the Debrigarh Wildlife Sanctuary, which stretches across the Lohara and Debrigarh Reserve forests on the Barapahad hills in Baragarh district. The waterfalls tumbling down the hillsides during the monsoon and the proximity of the large Hirakud reservoir attract a number of tourists.
The tiger, leopard, sloth bear, chital, sambar, and nilgai inhabit this almost virgin forest. Besides, a host of resident and migratory birds such as the chousingha and the crested serpent eagle add colour to the landscape. The mugger crocodiles and freshwater turtles residing in large numbers add to the diversity of the reserve forest.