10 Geography Chapter 2 Forest and Wildlife Resources

Chapter Notes and SummaryFlora and Fauna in India India is one of world’s richest countries in terms of biological diversity having 8% of total number of species in world.
1. Atleast 10% of India’s recorded wild flora and 20% of its mammals are on threatened list.
2. Some are categorised as ‘critical’ that is on verge of extinction like Cheetah Mountain Quail, Pink Headed Duck, Forest Spotted Owlet and plants like, Madhuca insignis and Hubbardia heptanewion etc.
3. In India 79 species of mammals, 44 of birds, 15 of reptiles and 3 of amphibians are threatened.
4. Nearly 1500 plant species are considered endangered.
5. According to International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), plants and animals have been categorised as
(a) Normal species (b) Endangered species
(c) Vulnerable species (d) Rare species
(e) Endemic species (f) Extinct species
Depletion of Flora and Fauna : Main Factors
1. Colonial Period greatest damage inflicted on Indian forests was during colonial period due to expansion of railways, agriculture, commercial and scientific forestry and mining activities.
2. Overutilisation of Forest Forests are being used to fulfil man’s needs directly and indirectly. We are obtaining wood, barks, leaves, rubber, dyes, medicines, food, fodder,
fuel etc from forests.
3. Agricultural Expansion Between period of
1951-1980, according to Forest Survey of India, over
26 ; 200 sq km of forests areas were converted into agricultural lands all over India.
4. Mining mining operations has caused severe ecological damage to reserve and region around. minning activities has blocked migration route of several species, including great Indian Elephants, thus,
disturbing their natural habitat. Buxa Tiger Reserve in Paschim Banga is seriously threatened due to ming operations.
5. Grazing and Full Wood Collection Over-grazing of land also leads to soil erosion. In many parts of India, hill sides have become barren because of over grazing by animals.
6. Multipurpose River Projects Since 1951, over
5000 sq km of area of forest were cleared for river valley projects and still is continuing with projects like Narmada Sagar Project in Madhya Pradesh, which would inundate 40000 hectares of forest.
Destruction of Forests and its Impact or Cultural Diversity
1. Many of tribal communities like Muria Gonds, Dhurwas,
Bhatras etc have lost their habitat because of destruction of forest.
2. Deforestation leads to drought because forests help in rainfall.
3. Deforestation is responsible for poverty. Most of poor people or tribal people depend on forests for their basic needs. If forests are destroyed these poor people will be deprieved off basic necessities.
4. Deforestation can induce floods because vegetation has ability to check speed of water.
5. Floods and drought both are considered major factors responsible for poverty.
Conservation of Forests and Wildlife in India
1. Preserve genetic diversity.
2. Preserve ecological diversity.
3. Preserve our life support i.e., water, air and soil.
Steps Taken by Government
1. India Wildlife Protection Act In 1960-1970,
conservationists demanded a National Wildlife Protection Programme. Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act was implemented in 1972, with various provisions for protection of habitats.
2. National Parks, Biosphere and Wildlife Sanctuaries To protect biodiversity Indian Government has established 92 national parks,
500 sanctuaries and 14 biosphere reserves.
3. Forest Policy India has a forest policy since 1844. It was revised in 1952 and again in 1988. Its objectives are
(a) Conservation of natural heritage.
(b) Maintenance of environmental stability.
(c) Check on soil erosion and denudation.
(d) Substantial increase in forest tree cover.
4. Projects for Protecting Specific Animals central government has announced several projects for protecting specific animals which were threatened.
(a) Project Tiger was launched in 1973 with a mandate to conserve tigers in a holistic manner.
(b) Four new tiger reserves which were added recently are
• Pakui-Bameri (Arunachal Pradesh/Asom)
• Bori-Satpura (Madhya Pradesh)
• Bhadra (Karnataka)
• Pench (Maharashtra)
(c) Project Elephant was launched in February 1992.
(d) Fourteen Elephant reserves have been set up during year.
5. Focus on Biodiversity conservation projects which have been launched by government focuses on biodiversity rather than on a few of its components.
Types and Distribution of Forests
1. Reserved forests (55%)
2. Protected forests (29%)
3. Unclassed forests (16%)
Community and Conservation
1. destruction of natural forests have shown a severe impact on many poor rural families who depend on forest resources for full, fodder, food, medicine, housing etc.
2. In Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan, villagers have fought against mining by citing Wildlife Protection Act.
3. inhabitants of five villages in Alwar district of Rajasthan have declared 1200 hectares of forest as the
‘Bhairodev Dakav Sonchuri’.
4. Many states have launched Joint Forest Management Programme. Odisha was first state to launch this programme.
5. Under JFM local people living on periphery of forests form organisation known as Van Samrakshma Samiti (VSS).
6. major purpose of VSS is to protect forest from encroachment, grazing, theft and fire.
7. Many farmers and citizen’s groups support ‘Beej Bachao Andolan’ in Tehri and ‘Navdanya’ have developed or are using various crop production methods which do not use synthetic chemicals for growing crops.
8. Chipko Movement launched by women of Chamoli in Northern India, saved more than 12000 sq km area of forests.

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