Read 9-CCNDPPE-Chapter%20V%20-%20Biological%20Diversity.pdf text version


s Tte region is c*remely rih in biodiwrsity. India, for instancq enoompasses uniqudfttenity of regions ranging mountains, hot deserts and crcrgreen forests to coastd mangrovcs. Lyin& as it doeq at the from snow-cap'pcd a confluenceof the Ethiopian, Palaearcticand Indo-Malayanbiological realms,India possesses nu"rber of intcresting componentsfrom each of thcse realms as well as severalspcciesendemic to the country. Apart from lower plant gloups and invertebrateq the plant and aninal diversity of India is relatively well docunented. About 15,000spccicsof flowering plants har,ebeen described.Estimates of other docunented plants include 5,000speciesof algae, 1,600licheng Z),000 fungi, 2,ru bryophytesand 600 pteridophytes.There are about insects,4,fi)0 molluscq 4000 fish, 140arnphibians,420reptiles, 1,200birds 75,000speciesof animalsincluding 50,000 (with 2,100 species and subspecies), and 340 mammals and other invertebrates. Further cxploration of the invcrtebrates may increase the totd to about 150,000animal species.Thug about 200,000species of living organismsmay be present in the country. Becauseof habitat dcstruction and other factors, a number of plants and animals are in the endangeredlist. Two speciesof mammals - Indian cheetahand lesserIndian rhinoceros - and two speciesof birds -- pink headed duck and mountain quail -are known to have become e*inct in this century alone. Eigirty one speciesof mammalg 47 speciesof birds, 15 speciesof reptiles and threb amphibiansare in the threatened category.Among these are the tiger, leopar4 Asiatic elephant and all three species of Indian crocodiles. About 1J00 of species of plants, acoountingfor 10 per cent of the angiospenns,are endangered. The exact classificationof biogeographicregions of the country is still not defined. Recently, the Wildlife Institutc of India has done an extensivestudy and identified nine biogeographicregions and 25 biotic provinces.The nine biogeographicregions are Hinialaya desert, semi-arid region, Western Ghats, Deccan"Gangetic plainsoNortheast India, islands and coastd areas Most of thesercgions are oommon to one or more of the sevenSAARC countries and India can be taken as a tairly representativenation as far as biological characteristicsare concerned. Hisorically, the natural vegetationcorrcrof India hasbeen dcpleted primarily by the oqpansionof agriculture to feed the burgeoning human population. About 44 Wr cent of India's land area is cultivated. Traditionally, permanent agriculture of food crops was confined mainly to the Indo'Gangetic plains and the Deccan plateau and coastalbelts. Since the latter part of the 18th century, tea and coffee plantations invadedthe moist forest regions of the Western by Ghats and easternHinalaya. This hasbeen accompanied plantationsof teak, eucalyptus, wattle and rubber. Thc area under te4 coffee and rubber in the Western Ghats of Keral4 Karnataka and Tamil Nadu alone is 460,000 hectares.This has resulted in a loss-of the natural cvergreen and moist deciduousforest correr.Teak, eucalyptug wattlEand certain other softwood plantations occupy10 per to 15 per cent of the forest area in the Western Ghats. Shifting cultirntion is a major causeof forest loss in certain eastern states such as Orissa, Meghalayq Arunachal Pradesh,Manipur, Mizoram, Nagalandand Tripura In thesestatesbetcrccn25 per cent and 50 per cent of thc forest land is under shifting cultivation or in fallow. Short rotation cycleshave depletedsoil fertility and kept the vegetation stagcswith only grasscsand crceds.Unlike other states in the country, only a minor arrested in early successional proportion of the forests varying from 24 per cent in Anrnachal to 9 per cent in Meghalap, in these predominantly tribal statesare governmentresenrcforests, the rest being village forestg printely owned forests of unclassedstate forests belonging to district councils. Developmentd projects like irrigation and hydroelectricdamsand nining hare also depletedthe biological resourses. In 1979,there were l$Salatge dams in thc country. Bctwpen 1951and 19Q about 400,000hectaresof forest land were submergedby dan projects Enmples of forest dernstation causedby mining are Kundremukh in the Western Ghats and Amarkanta& in ccntral India" Tb,s Forcst Protection Act of 19B0has largely put a stop to this type of deforestation. Water and air pollutioa arc growing pro6lems in India But sufficient information is not availableon their impact on the natural vegetatioaof the oountry or oo the fauna. Poachingcontinuesto be a scriow tbrcat to tbe sunival of numerousvtrteb'rats.A lucrative illegal trade continues in ivory (elephants),horns (rhino), fun (snon,leopar4 tiger, panther, lyrur,etc.), skins (snakes),musk (musk deer) and feathers (peacock).The trade iir fauna is mainly in birds such as hill mynahs.The export of primates for use in soughtafter. India signedthe conventionon International medical researchwashalted in 1!t8. Orchids are especialty

Trade in EndangeredSpeciesof Ftora and Fauna (CITES) tn ln6. Under the Wildlife Protection Ao,,69 species of mammalg ,10birds ar.dn amphibiansand reptiles are lised as highly endangeredor rare. The great Indus rirrcr and its drainage basin forms the dominant physiographicfeature of Pakistan. Most of the regions in the north and the west of the Indus are rocky and mountainou and the flood plain lies east of the Indus in the central and southern parts. The fauna, flora and wildlife habitats in Pakistanare ofgreat variety and richness. There :re about 5,700plant speciesof which over 5,000are wild and 372 of thesc occur exclusivelyin Pakistan. The rich and raried fauna in Pakistan is affinities with the three biological regidns of the world like India. Ten of the 18 mammalian orders are found in Pakistan,including the world's smallestsurviving E'nnalr the mediterranean pigny shrew (Suncusetuscan), and in the coastalwaterg the largest ma'omal eVerknown to exist, the blue ufralc. Endemism is not high but a number of texa includi"g Indus Dolpbin, Chiltan Markhor and Suleman Markhor are endemic to Pakistan.Of the world's d100 mammal species,188 hart been reported in Pakistan,that is, 63 type.s of rodents, 38 typsof batg 25 typesof hoofed rnirns\ 39 type of carnivoreg 11 types of insectivors,one of pholidola, three types of primates and nine types of aquatic mo-mals beloaging to catacea.Of the over $600 spcciesof birds in the world" 666 speciesof migratory and local are found in Pakistan Endemism at the specieslevel h not known. Out of 8J00 speciesof reptiles in the world" 174 speciesare found in Pakistan.Only 14 marine and 12 terrestrial snakespeciesare poisonous.Pakistanhas the fascinatingmarine green turtle nesting on beachesat Sandspit,Hawls Bay, Ormara, Jewanir, and Astola Island. A small number of Olive Ridley Turtles also nest on Sandspit and Hawk Bay beaches.About 400 speciesof marine fish and 125 speciesof fresh water fish are found in Pakistan. Only 40 marine fish speciesare consideredof economicimportance.Some speciesowe their existenceto both marine and fresh water, for instance,the hilsa (Palola), Pakistan;sinsect life forms comprise at least 20,m0 species. Like India the landscapcand the habitatsof Pakistanare diverseand inctudeislands,marine, coastaf warm and sandy beacheg cliffg bay, mud flatg mud volcanog mangroveforestg estuarieg delta, lakes, reservoirg deserts,cultivated rs flood pl"in\ rivers rockey mountain$ glacie, and various tpes of forests.Although most parts of Pakistanare arid or semi-arid, fir,e major rivers flow through the country. There is an extensiw network of wetlands. Pakistanis one biodiversity is today seriouslythreatened(see of the principal wintering groundsfor migrating birds. But this e:densive table5.1). The human population has been increasingrapidly in Pakistan.As a result, cities and towns have been expanding wild life habitats,speciesof animals and plants and the ecosystems taking up village and forest land. Consequently, have suffered. Disposal of solid wastes by urban settlements has also given rise to pollution and destruction of habitats. Scatteredhousingprojects are gowing in the country. New townshipshavebeen putting pressureon scarce forest resources.The xpansi6aof housing and tourism in the fragile mountain ecos),stemis affecting biological diversity. Wildlife habitatsin Pakistanare alsothreatenedby agriculture,deforestation,monoculture aflorestation of eucallptus, drainage of wetland and marshes; pollution" water engineering workq mineral extractions : settlements and activities. orercxploitation of rangelandsby domestic livestockvnd other derrelopment Agricultual practices like cultivation on stcep slopes and marginal landq pesticidesand fertilizers, mechanisation, irrigation and cropping pattrns,hara alsoafrectedthe animst habitat. Constructionof damg barrageg and headworks on rirrcrs in Pakistanhas changedthe landscapeof the country. Wildlife and frsh habitats upstream and doumstreams have changed. Qlzzinr of livestock on jungle lands in competition with wildlife has also depleted biodiversity. Powerlineg highways,roads,airfields, ca"als havealso had their impact. Wild mamnals, birds, reptiles and fishesare also being hunted for economicand recreationalreasons. Snowleopard markhor and ibcx figure prominently in the endangeredlist. There is no ban in the hunting of game birds The angling of non-game and game frsh is also becomingvery popular in Pakistan.Mahseer and Rainbow trout in mountain streamsare being killed indiscrininately. Crab fishing is done by foreipers in coastaln'atersnear Karacii. birdSinclude duckg partridge, ram chokor, chokor, see-sse,quail rock pigeon, dove and waders.The angling of non-gameand game fish is also becoming rary popular in Pakistan.Mahseer and Rainbow trout in mountain streamsare being killed indiscriminately. Crab fishing is done by foreipers in coastalwaters near l(arachi. Uke India and Pakistan Bangladarh aboundsin floral and faunal wealth. Girrcn the regional differences in rainfall patterns, there are different types of vegetatioq namcly, grasslands,deciduoug mixed evergreen and errcrgreen. Besides two other plant comnunitieg naoely, halophytes and hydrophytes are also found. Mango, banana and bamboo are very qommon. Madar (Erytfuka voiegae vw Orientialis) and Hijol (Baningnnia acatangulo) arc also common near water sourcos.In the coastalbelt, coconut and betelnut palms grow in abundance.Difrerent plants of the mangrove family predominate it the Sundarbang the principal ones being Sundari (Huiteia fomes), gewa (Exroeia agalluha), keora (Sonnemta apetala),garan (Ceiops rwberyiona),and golpata (Nypafuticans). There is a lunriant growth of evergreenand mixed elrgreen trees in the Chittagong forests.The dominant trees are chaplish

(Artocarpuschaplasha), Telsur (Hopea odomta), garjan (Dipteruaryus ailbinatus), jarul (I-age6tqemia Speciosa), (Albizia lebbeck),gamar mahogany(Swiaaia mehapni), bamboo, cane,kadam (Anheephaless Cfunba),karci (Colophyllumpo;yotthum),chattim (Alstoia scholais) and shimul (Bomb& ceiba) besides (Gmelinaoftona), kamdeb a host of others. Segun (Teaona grandis),an exotic tree is now widely planted. The Madhupur forest is almost entirely coveredby nl (Shorearcbusta), a decidouswhich has a luxuriant growth. Besidesthe above,there are also two other minor areas of forestg one in Sylhet,where mostly deciduousand varietiestrees groq and the other is in Dinajpur, which is characterised sd. by evergreen Various tlpes of halophytascan be found here and there all along the coastal belt. Water plants like shapla (Nynphoea nouchali), neel kamal (Nymphoea stellata),topa pana (Pistiastraiotes) and kalmi (IpomoeaaEtatica) and grasses kash(Socchantm khagra (Phogmites suchas spontaneus), a variety of reedsand long ko*a) and ulu (Imperata qlindrica) naturally grow in the haor (depression)areasof Sylhetand in the marshy areasof Faridpur, Kushtia, and rajshahi. gangladeshis a natural habitat for rich fauna with many interestingspecies. Accordi"g to early explorers and nnturalistg there was onoea wonderful faunawithin the territory of former uadividedBengal.Regrettably,someof the animalslike rhinoceroE buffalo, antelope,seroq pinkheadduclq Nukta duclqwhitewingedwood duck and peafowl are efinct or ncarly so and the number of many other speciesin the country has been greatly reduced. Ignorance is an4 abow all, indifferenceto wildlife and the wilful action of many different agencies largely thE causeof the disappearance many species. of particularlyof fresh water,has a specialrelevance. an economicactivitythe The fisherypotential of Bangladesh, As inland fisheriesranksonly nextto agriculture, contributingmore than 90 per cent of the total fish landings. Few areas in the world excelin suchvast inland fisheryresources. Fish productionis done through exploitationof wild stocks (rivers and streams)and standing bodies(bils and swamps) and, in a small measure, in open waterwa)4s through the waters,in general,are rich in prawn, shrimpsand lobsters.Marine cultivationof stocksin flooded rice fields.The More than 107 species fish belongingto 30 lisheriesare just as important as the inland fisheriesin Bangladesh. of belonging 35 familiesfrom the estuaries the Bay of Bengalhavebeen to familiesfrom freshwaters andLT species of There are alsonumeroustortoisesand turtles which are of noted.More than 25 species prawnshavebeen collected. edible. an The other Himalayankingdom in the SAARC region,Bhutan, also possesses impressivelist of flora and fauna. rich natural heritage can be attributed to its unique geographiclocation in the eaitern Himalaya, extending Its realms; its annual rainfall which is biogeographic through both the Indo-Malayan(Oriental) and the Palaearctic higher that in the Central and Western Himalaya;its altitude which varies from 2fi) metres on the considerably metres in the enreme north, the correspondingvariation in climatic southern border with India to over 7,0(X) its rich forest resource, coveringover 60 per cent of its total land area. conditions;an4 belt contains Asiatic elements, Along Bhutan'ssouthernborder,the narrowtropicalandsubtropical includingleopard, gaur, greater one horned rhinoceros,hog deer, hornbill, tiger, trogon, wild water buffalo and other lndo-Malayan of species mammalsand birds. Only 150km to the north are found high Himalayanfauna,which includeblue sheep, and other speciescharacteristic the Palaearcticrealm. takin, musk deer, snow leopard,wolves,lammergeiers, of which are adaptable both tropical and temperateconditions. Betweenthesetwo extremeregionsare species to These include the Himalayanblack bear, leopard,wild dog, sambar,barking deer, serow,wild boar and languor. which are threatenedwith extinctionsuch as the Asiatic elephant,greater Bhutan hasa variety of mammal species one-hornedrhinoceros,tiger, leopard snowleopard,wolf, Asiatic wild dog gaur, musk deer, pygmyhog and hispid hare. Threatenedbird speciesinclude Blyth's tragopan,Scalter'smonal pheasant, black-necked the crane and the peregrine falcon. Two reptiles are also endangeredthat is, the lndian python and gharial (1). Unfortunately, is limited as there hasbeen no surveyof Bhutan'swildlife except informationon the statusof thesespecies severely by that which is being conducted the Royal Societyfor the Protectionof Nature (RSPhDinvolvingthe black-necked crane.As regardsits flora speciegBhutan'sfive main ecofloristiczones,support a wide variety of vegetation. into Bhutan'swildlife resources being increasinglythreatened encroachments forestsand wildlife sanctuaries. are by ManasWildlife Sanctuaryfor instance, 100ha of forest area near its northern boundaryhas been cteared In about plantation has also been started.The problem of for agricultureand settlement.At its westernend, a sugarcane grasslands. hasbadly degraded somealpineand subalpine Organisedpoachingis another erosiondue to overgrazing particularlyin the south.This involves fish dynamiting settingsnaresfor bears,cloudedleopard,and major problem, of and shootingof deer,gaur,water buffalo and rhinocerosfor asiaticleopard(usuallybecause atlackson livestock), problems include stealing of agar wood which is used in traditional medicine and the their skin. Poaching manufactureof incenseand perfume.

In Nepal, dramatic changesin elevation from 60 m to 8848m within a limited width of 150 km has induced climatic more than 25 per cent of the land is above3,000m, with variationsfrom the sub-tropicalto the arctic.Proportionally, million hectare perpetually icebound. A major consequenceof these e)Cremc variations is reflected in the 0.3 biological index of Nepal. In Nepal, 35 forest types have been identified of which more than ?5 arc confined to locatedin the terai contain samples the mountainparks and reserves. the other hand,the parks and reserves On of peculiar to the middle mountains,which includes the Mahabharat range, have flora. The forest type.s Indo-Gangetic protected areas.Becausethe distribution of some major speciesis limited complete coveragecannot be achieved simply in terms of the physiographiczones,even within a few subdivisions.For example, lhe Cedrusdeodota does torulosa is the Kali-Gandaki; and,,Quercus not occur east of the Karnali zone; the eastern limit of the Cupressus till the Manang Valley. Lithocarpw fenastratusis confined to the Arun Valley. Other interesting taxa dilnata e:dends occur only in limited areas.The Rftododendrontricholadumhasbeenobservedonly in the Arun. Observationsindicate that the central Hirnalaya is rich in flora. Tbe Narayani basin constitutesthe meeting point between the two extremitiesof the westernand easternHimalaya. floristic region,and containsmore than 1,000 The LangtangNationalPark in the centralHimalayalies in the eastern medicinalherbg some of which are on the vergeof flowering plants and ferns.Theseincludesubstantial species of of are extinction. More than 20 plant species this ffi, and the Larix nepalensis conservedin this part, which contains forest types.Mododendron conanium andMododendron loudensii are endemic to the park while 13 of Nepal's 35 National park falls in the easternHimalayan region. This park Piceosmithiona is also representedhere. Sagarmatha found in Nepal represented here.Mododendron nivale is found with 10 of the 32 species is rich in rhododendrons, limit of 5,200m. SheyPhokundo NationalPark and DhorpatanHunting Reservelie at the boundary at the higbest The former, dominatedby steppevegetationof Caragana and of the easternand westernHimalayanfloristic regions. more than Z) species plantsendemicto Nepal,as also severalhundredspecies high plateau of of Lonicera,contains can also be found in abundance. Khaptad and Rara National Parks lie in flora. A variety of central Asiatic species down into the middle mountains.Although Rara is the Himalayanfloristic region.The former extends the western smallestamong the national parks, it has the distinctionof being the only area that containsCedrus deodaraand About 16 forest tlpes and 20 endemicplants are found in the Rara torulosa,alongwith Piceasmithiana. Cupressus National Park is known for its highland meadowsand coniferousforests,as well as its oaks and park. Khaptad in Taruacum nepalensis, rare flower, was first discovered this park. Some medicinalplants like a rhododendrons. glaciallsandArundinaria. Rheumspecies represented alongwith Daphne pofuhylla, Aconitum,Swertiq and are Paris The Terai is richer in pindrow, Quercus are found in abundance. incana and Quercus lanuginose Forests of.Abies faunabelong to the Indo-Malayanrealm and someto than the Himalaya.Generally,most of the mammal species are 850 the Palearticrealn. About 100mammals, birds and three large reptile species found in Nepal. Of particular of note are the abundantsnakevarieties,as well as a vast representation aquatic fauna such as Frshand turtles. Twentyfive mammal,nine bird and three reptile species,listedin the Red Data Book, are totally protectedin Nepal of because their low populations(seetable 5.4). licenses neededto hunt are as'game' are open to legal hunting.Supplementary Certain animalsand birds classified Himalayantahr, sambar,serowand goral. Generalhunting leopard,Himalayanblack bear,blue sheep, the common for licenses can be usedto hunt the chital, barking deer,hog deer,wild boar and the Indian hare. Hunting licenses black partridge,brahminyduck,water hen,blue rock pigeons, doves,chukor the peafowl,Kalij pheasAnt, birds cover partridge,snipe,common pigeonand quail. information availableabout the land- basedflora and fauna of Maldives exceptfor that There is no consolidated passing throughthe islands.No organisedresearch establishment mentioned in studiescarried out by expeditions existsin the country to carry out suchstudies.However,plenty of information is availableabout the marine flora reefs and open sea.Some163species ofred algae,23species green algae, of and faunathat existsin the lagoons, havebeen reported from the waters of the Maldives. of of 21 species blue-greenalgaeand 18 species brown algae is A of Out of these,a new species Dictyurushasalsobeenreported.Information aboutseagrasses very scanty. study rare and sparsein all the islands.Sea grasses arb and Thalassina of lV77 reported that the flats of Cymodocea crossing the atoll rims. occur mostly on seawardreefs or adjacentto channels some of the best coral reef formationsin the world. While all the coral Maldiveshas the distinctionof possessing There has been no severalof them have been studied by many scientists. reefs have yet to be fully investigated, Addu atoll, most of the atolls of Maldives remain to study of coral reefs.Except for the northernmost systematic work described geographic distributionof 143species hermatypiccoralsbelongingto three of the be studied.A 1976 1957,especially from the reefs of Addu atoll. generacollectedin of of and Maldives has vast resources shellfish,sponges other species invertebrate..Molluscanshellsand red coral Maldives. However, again, there has been no products have even constitutedsbme of the major exports of distribution.Four species turtles havebeen reported of biologicalstudyof their diversityand geographical systematic Maldivesis considered be an irnportantbreedingground for marine turtles in to to be breeding in the Male' atoll.

the tndian Ocean region. A 1958work recorded63 speciesof birds in the Maidives.Of these 15 specieswere described as resident breeders and two speciesof terns as visiting breeders. Some speciesof oceanic birds are reported to coloniscand nest on some of the uninhabited islands.The islanderseat any bird that has webbedor feet. No scientificstudy has so far been undertakenon the bird coloniesor the marine turtles. semi-webbed A large variety of reef fish is found in the Maldives. During a recent study on the effects of environmental Investigations the of on degradation on local reef fisheryin the Maldives,152species reef hsh were investigated. biology of tuna bait Fshesof Maldives arc being undertakenin collaboration with scientistsof Australia and Institute(ArizonaStateUniversity,USA), expeditionf986-1989 collected 300 The CanccrResearch SolomonIslands. speciesof marine plants and animalsand terrestrial plants to evaluatethem for anti-cancerproperties. Skipjaclq yellow fin tuna and other tuna relatedspecies and reef fishes constitutean important part of the countr/s trade, Japan,Kore4 which dominated in tuna fishing for a long time. But the fishingefforts of countrieslike Seychelles, Taiwan and Sri lanka are likely to affect the Maldivian fishery. There is no report on extinct or threatened species mining of reefs for building material (coral in the Maldives.However,the growingpopulationin Male', increasing rock and coral sand) has adverselyaffected coral beds.An ESCAP report on coral reefs in the South Asian Region of in collectionare the major causes coral reef degradation the Maldives. hasreportedthat coral mining and souvenir The impact of recreational activities on coral reefs are also beginning to be felt around the island resorts. With of work in Male' and the development tourist centresin South Male' and Alifu atollg there increasing construction will be a continued and increasingdemand for constructionmaterial. Coral mining reducesthe topographical complexityof the reef flats and, hence,the biomassand reef fish are affected.Since relatively few commercially identified are important reef fish dwell on the reef flat, the effectsof suchdegradation not apparentamongspecies as important in the aquariumtrade and as bait fish for tuna industry.Although the effectsof coral mining on reef fishery appearto be minimal, the importanceof activelygrowingreef flats as activebarriers againstisland erosion As cannotbe underestimated. coral minersmovto outer areasin order to find a ready supplyof coral rock, their for terms, stripping of thesereefs could haveseriousconsequences islandssituatedbehind them. In socioeconomic who are involvedin reef fishingis derivedfrom this source. a relatirrely small proportion of incomeof households But there is a potential for developing reef fisherygiven favourable marketsand incentives. practisedby touristsuntil it was recentlybanned.Sporadig According to reports,spearfishingwasindiscriminately unlawful use of explosives for.catching fish has been reported on some islands.Some private parties are also of collectingornamentalfish for exports.Accordingto unconfirmedreports,somespecies ornamentalhsh are now havebeen made to understand the effectsof degradationof depleteddue to indiscriminatefishing.Investigations the environmenton local reef fisheries. Sri l-anka also has a rich diversity of plant and animal life and a high degree of endemism within its varied of the Both climateand geologyhaveshaped wide biologicaldiversityof the country.The ecoslntems Sri ecosystems. forestsor tropical rainforests(in the low and mid country Lanka in terms of floristic formations,are wet evergreen zone),dry mixedevergreen forest forests(in the low and mid countryintermediate wet zone),intermediateevergreen (in the dry zone),and the thorn forest (in the arid zone).Over much of the mountainintermediate zone,grasslands In are found with smdl patchesof forest in shelteredpockets. this region, forestswere probablymore widespread in the past but today the dry mountainglasslandis the dominanttype of vegetation. The dry zone (including the arid region) coverstwo-thirdsof the country and in this area none of the forestsare Irrigated agriculture spreadto all parts of the dry zone strictly primary,exceptperhapson someisolatedmountains. sometime in the historyof the country.From the 14thcentury,with the declineof Sri Lanka's hydrauliccivilization, to restoredthe naturalecosystems near primevalform. Beginningfrom aboutthe mid-19thcentury, naturalsuccession pace of exploitationled to a sharp reduction in the the dry zone forestswere exploitedfor timber. The increasing of area of forest cover and a severedegradation the remainingforests. in stalted arouhdthe 14th century.It increased magnitudeand In the low and mid country wet zone,deforestation of spreadto the hill country from the mid-l9th centuryas plantations coffee (followed by tea and rubber) beganto to be raised.At presenf the natural forestsin the countryare estimated cover24 per cent of the land area,and many of theseforestshavebeen subjectto overexploitation. and the number of endemic speciesamong them is There are about 1900 indigenousspeciesof angiosperms, extraordinarilyhigh. Endemic angiospermspeciesnumber 845 or nearly 30 per cent of the total. Among the species endernic.In the lower groups,575 species are of pteridophytes, per cent of the 314 recordedindigenous 18 speciesof Telptremataceae, family of a of 190 of species fungi havebeen recorded.Some 110 indigenous mosses, lichens.havebeen identified, and 39 of them are endemic. (92 per cent) are found in the wet southwestpart of the endemicspecies By far the larger number of indigenous from deforestation. Recordsshowa regionthat has sufferedheaviest country.Unfortunatelyit is the wet southwest 61

forest cover of nine per cent of the land area in the low and mid elevationwet zone, and a somewhathigher percentage the montanewet zone.And, worse, even the few renaining natural forests are, for the most part, in heavily degradeddue to overexploitatioq illicit felling and scarrenging fuelwood. Fortunately, extinction of many for has species not yet taken placethough they havebecomeendangered. The primevalor near-primeval forestsof the wet zone are remarkable for their floristic richness.Most of the endemicsin these forests are tree speciesin the canopyor subcanopylevel, and, collectirrely,they are often the dominant speciesin the forest. Taking t'he individual species' populationdensities often low, with only a few individualsper hectare.Another featureis that many the are of them showrestricteddistributionwithin the zone.For example, endemicspecies restrictedto the headwaters 57 are of the Gin Ganga/Ganges Bentota Ganga/Ganges, 35 are confinedto the foothills of the PeakWitderness and and ForestReserve. Among the endemics the PeakWilderness in Reserve severalspecies the endemicdipterocarp are of genusStemonoporus, occuring at a higher elevationthan any other dipterocarpin Sri l-anka or elsewherein the world. One of the interestingfloristic featuresof the dry zone is that many of Sri Lanka's prized timbers come from the natural forestsof this part of the country.Satinwood (Chlororylonswietenia), Trincomalecwood (Berrya cordifolia) and ebonyare typicallydry zonespecies, while milla (Vitex pinnata)is found in both dry and wet zones. Thesespeciei have been very heavily exploited in the past, and are now very scarce. Isolated hills and hill rangesin both the dry zone and the wet zone possess interesting flora. The dry zone consisting mainly of a broad plain at a little over sealevel,hasseveralinselbergs rising up to severalhundredmetresabovethi lowlandplains.One of these,Ritigalakanda, from earlytimesbeenrecognised a placeof rare medicinalplants. has as The level of floristic diversitythere was found to be much higher than in the surroundingarea.The Knucklesis an isolatedrangeof mountainsseparated from the centralmassil.Within a small area of 15,000 there is a sequence ha, of vegetationtypesrangingfrom dry mixed evergreen forest to the wet evergreen montaneforest, includingpltches of a unique pygrty forest, with small,much branchedtrees,seldomexceeding one metre in height.In the Knuckles ridge,over 100ferns and allied species havebeenrecorded, against for Sri Lanka as a whoteand 600for India. as 314 There are 559recordedvertebrates (excluding marinefish and migrantbirds) in Sri Lanka.They comprise59 species of fish"39 amphibianq162reptiles,227birds, and 86 mammals. The pattern of endemismamongthe vertebrates is similar to that of the angiosperm flora. There is a high degreeof endemism-- 25 per cent of the vertebratespecies " and by far the larger proportion of the endemicspeciesare found in the wet southwestportion of the island. Whereasamongthe angiosperm flora there is aboutan equallevelof endemism the mountainforestsand the rain in forestsat lower elevations, amongthe faunathere is a significantly higherlevel of endemismin the mountainregion. About a third of the indigenousspecies fish are endemic.Among the amphibians, of one genus(Nanophrya)with three species, and 1.6other species endemic.Many of the endemicspecies frogs occupyvery specialhabitats are of and havea n:urow geographic range.For example, threespecies Nanophrya found separately the central the of are in massd the Knucklesrange,and the southernhill range.The endemicamphibians includethree species lcthyophis of (linbless amphibians).Among the reptiles, as many as 60 per cent of the speciesare endemig and, like the amphibia"s,many of them havea restrictedgeographic distribution. In Sri l-ank4 390species birds havebeenrecordedof which 169species migrant.The endemicspecies of are number ?n and the majority of them are found only in the wet parts of the country and that, too, only in the existingnatural forests.Out of all the indigenousspecies birds, as many as 57 are rnrlnerable threatened.The 86 indigenous of or speciesof mammals consist of 30 speciesof batg 23 rodents, 14 carnivores, seven artiodactyls, six shrews, four primatesand one each of the elephantand pangolin.Twelve of the mammalianspeciesare endemiq four shrews, five rodentg one carnivore,and two primates.The distributionof indigenous mammalianfauna follows very closely the distribution of the natural vegetationtypes.The highestdiversityis seenin the low and mid country wet zone, and the low percentage forest coverin this region threatens survivalof many mammalianspecies. of the among the large mammalsin Sri Lank4 perhapsthe best known,isthe elephant.Today it is found only in the dry zone.Even within this zonethe clearingof forestsfor agricultureand settlementhasreducedtheir numbers,and crude estimates haveput the presentpopulationat 2,500to 3,000. Action is being takenby the Departmentof Wildlife Conservation to preserve adequate areasof naturalforests, strategically located, protectingelephants. for Other mammalianspecies indigenousto Sri I-ankainclude severalspecies deer, bear and leopard and other species the cat famity. of of ln the oceens surrounding Lanka37 species cetacea Sri of havebeenrecorded,and theseincludethe sperm and blue whaleswhich are found in large numbersnear the Trincomaleecoast.There is one very rare species dugongoff of the Kalpitiya coastin the northwest. Among the invertebrates, there is a rich diversityof species. too, The freshwater zooplanktonform a well documented group, and most of the species cosmopolitan tropicopolitan.Some201 are or species crabs,over 400 species spiders,and 265species land snailshaVebeen recorded. of of of Besidesthe climax ecosystems, there are severallocalisedecosystems, which are of biological interest.The inland


aquaticecosystems support many species fish and invertebrates. of The inland wetlandsoccur in the floodplainsof riversand in shallowdepressions the dry zone,and the largestareasare in the flood plainsof the Mahaweli.The in vegetation consists of grass (wet villu grassland) with scattered shrubs and bushy vegetation. These flood plains support the greatestanimd biomassdensityof all the ecosystems found in Sri I-anka. Over 6fi) elephants(or one fifth of the island'swild elephantpopulation)frequent thesefloodplainsand adjacentareas.The wetlandsare also the habitatsof other wild life suchas deer and birds (includingmigrant species). With the impoundingof water in the irrigation reservoirs upstream, ecolog5r the wetlands boundto ba affected,but no scientificstudyof these the of is effects has yet been made. Swampforestsare found cheekby jowl with the wet villu grasslands the dry zone.In the wet zone,swampforests in havemostly been cleared,and the few patchesthat remain are of great scientilicinterest.A small patch of swamp forest in the floodplainsof the Kaluganga, near Bulathisinghala, found to be the last shelterof trvo rare endemic was plant species, moonii and Mesua stylosa.The wet montane grasslands Horton Plains and the Stemonoporus at surrounding montane forests are situated in the highest plateau at an elevation of 2,100 to 2,200 metres. Hydrologically, this area is of considerable importanceas tributariesof two major rivers originatehere.Floristically, the grasslands and adjoiningforestshavea rich diversityof species with many endemics. Faunisticdiversityis also at a high level. The coastalecos)ttemsof Sri Lanka include strand and littoral comrhunities, salt marshes,estuaries(including mangrove vegetation), coral reefs.Estuaries, and with their sea-grass bedsand mangrove vegetation, not extensive are in Sri Lanka,but they are the breedinggroundsof fish and other marineorganisms. Theseecosystems threatened are by overfishing which destroys seagrassbedsand severely the depletes fish population,cutting of mangroves the for firewood and other purposes,and land lilling of mangrovemarshes.A conservationmanagementplan for the mangroveareasof Sri Lanka is being preparedby the forest department.Coral reefs which fringe the coast are highly productiveecosystems. Some 171 species stony corals have been recorded in Sri Lanka. The mining of of coralsfor obtaininglime not only destrop thesehighlyproductiveand delicateecosystems alsoexposes coast but the to erosion.

Mcasurcs tatcn All countriesof the SAARC region havetaken stepsto protect their rich biodiversity. Under the existingWildlife Act of Bangladesh there are three kinds of protectednatural areas.Wildlife sanctuaries and nationalparksof Bangladesh respectively, the category and IV of the UN's list of protectedareas. fall, in II The 'game reserve'of Bangladesh doesnot fall in any categoryof UN protectedareas,At presentthere are 15 natural protected areasin Bangladesh. thesehave been established protection of rare and threatenedspecies. All for Of these,three wildlife sanctuaries yet to be notified in the gazette. are Except for the proposedHail Haors Wildlife Sanctuary, the othersare situatedin the forestareas.The total areacoveredby them is 101,21t6 which is about all ha 4.55per cent of the total forest area or 0.7 per cent of the total territory of the country. Hunting and shooting of wildlife can be allowed on specialpermit in the 'game reserve'.But in the lone game reservesituatedin the Teknaf reserved forests,shootinghasnot yet beenpractised. activitiesharmful to wildlife All are prohibited in the reserve. Protectedareasin forestscover all kinds of ecologicalhabitats.But as wetlandsare not under the control of the Agriculture Ministry, it is provingdifficult to declareprotectedareasin the wetlands. As a first step towardsconserving rich wildlife resources, its Bhutan has notified 12 protectedareaswhich include one nationalpark, three wildlife sanctuaries, four wildlife reserves and four reservedforests.They cover more than Z) per cent of the countr/s total land area. For administration, a Wildlife Division has been set up within the Departmentof Forestry.A management plan hasbeenpreparedfor the ManasNationalPark which is to be managed asa wildlife corridor stretchingacross Bhutan'ssouthernborder contiguous with the ManasWitdlife Reserve India. of Under an Integrated Forest Managementand ConservationProject currently underway,Bhutan government's capabilityin the field of nature conservation to be strengthened. is Initial activitiesalready undertakenunder the project includestaff training in wildlife behaviourand habitat observations. discourage poachingof witd animals, To includingthoseclassified endangered, Bhutangovernment recentlyissuedr schedule finesto be imposed as has the of on poachers. To checkfurther degradationof the forest area in the southernbelt of the country along the Indo-Bhutanborder, of andgiventhe recogrrition its important role as a wildlife corridor facilitatingfree movementof wildlife, particularly has the elephants, Bhutangovernment declared existingforestsupto two km from the Indo-Bhutanboundaryas reservedforests.All activitiessuchas human encroachment, cattle grazingand forest fires havebeen banned.The haveagreed bilateraleffortsfor conservation the transborder Bhutanese Indiangovernments and on of forests. Both


governments decided setup an Indo-Bhutan have to for Committee the Conservation Transborder of Forests serve to aswildlife corridors. The committee's mandate to identify,implement is and monitor special measures be taken to to conserve transborderforests.lnitial efforts will be made along the West Bengal-Samchiborder areas. the India's first national park (now called Corbett National Park) was set up in 1936.At that time, the rulers of the former princely stateshad their own hunting preserves. Some of thesesuch as Gir and Bandipur are important national parks today.After independence, Indian Board for Wildlife was constitutedin,1952. However,the the earlier nexusbetweenhunting and conservation meantthat the majority of protectedareas,under the modern legal fra-ework, were set up in deciduousforests where large mammalianherbivoresand carnivoresoccur at high densities. The initial emphasis was also on endangered and endemicmammalssuchas the rhino (Kazirangaand Manas sanctuaries), hangul deer (Dachigam) and Asiatic lion (Gir). A few preserves water birds were also for created, notably Bharatpur, Ranganthitoo,Vedanthangaland Point Calimere sanctuaries. ln 1973,the Indian government launched ProjectTiger to savethis species whichhad declinedto an estimated1,800 animalsfrom 40,000 at the beginningof the century.The 1986estimateis about 4,000tigers.The project has been successful saving in India'snationalanimalfrom immediate extinction. In 1980,there were 17 national park and 95 wildlife sanctuaries India. ln 1990,there are 69 national parks and in 399sanctuaries million hectares four per centof India'sland areaor 15.82per cent of India's forest covering12.93 or area.According to a study of the Wildlife Institute of India, the protectedareasare not distributed equallywithin the states or biogeographic regions.Many biotic provinces poorly protected.Certainecosystems species are and have inadequate conservation; example, dry grassland for the biome,and animals like Indianwild ass,markhor,Phayre's leaf eatingmonkeyand rustyspotted cat.The report suggests that the total protected areanetworkshouldincrease to 651 totalling15.13 million hectare 4.6 per cent of the country. or In India, the areasprotected largemammals for havehelpedto conserve other components the ecosystem. of But the emphasis deciduous forestsand grasslands meanta general neglect other biomesand of the overall on has of biological diversityof the country.There are a few exceptions. example, the Sunderbans For Tiger Reservehas a significantproportion of the mangrovehabitat.During 1970s, importanceof conserving the entire spectrum the of biologicaldiversitywas realised. The resultwasthe introductionof a programmefor settingup biospherereserves to preservegeneticdiversityin representative biogeographic areas.The first biospherereserves was set up in 1985 in Nilgiri (Karnataka,Kerala and Tamil Nadu). Subsequently, more biospherereserves 7 havebeen added,namely, NandaDevi, Nokrek,Manas,Sunderbans, Gulf of Mannarand Great Nicobar. Maldives extremely is concerned aboutits marineenvironment, hastakenseveral and stepsto obtainexpertopinion on the subject. the requestof the Maldiviangovernment 1983, At in UNESCO commissioned brief studyof the a conservation statusof the marineenvironment Maldives, of with particularregardto the possible establishment of biosphere reserves underthe UNESCOMan andBiosphere (MAB) Programme. studyrecommended The legislation and management creationof zoneplans. by In 1984,the governmentconstituteda Council for the Protectionand Preservation the Matdives Environmenr, of whichis now under the Ministry of Planningand Environment. The counciladvises government environmental the on matters,particularlythe environmental impactsof development projects.In 1986, when crackswere discovered the in MaIe'reef, the governmentengaged British firm, to undertakea geological, a geotechnical and ecologicalstudy of selectedatolls. Researchon reef degradation and its effectson reef fish and bait fish has also been conductedand on the recent outbreakof crown of thorns,which is extremelydamagingto coral rcefs. Yet anotherreportwasprepared 1989at the request the government in of regarding levelrise.The government sea alsomadea requestto the Netherlands government the United NationsDevelopment and Programme deputea to missionto preparea report on the global sealevel rise and suggest sglutionsthrough designengineering. There have been two setsof forcesthreateningbiologicaldiversityin Nepal: population movementsfrom the hills to the terai and the expansion agriculture.Lessperceptibleperhaps, of havebeenthe secondary effectsof forestfires and widespread livestockgrazing, which hassuppressed process the ofnatural regeneratipn ofexotic and rare flora. In 1959,the Fauna Preservation Societyrecommended the creation of a National Park in Chitwan, and a rhino sanctuary further to the south.In 1961,the Rhino PatrollingUnit was reorganised protect this animal from to poachers.In 1.968, the Trisuli WatershedDevelopmentProject was requestedby the governmentto assess conservation issues. The Wildlife ProtectionAct of 1969led to the creationof six hunting reserves the Terai and in onein mountains. However, various managerial technical and deficiencies prevented effective have the implementation of the Act. In L970,the creation'of the Chitwan and Langtangparks constituteda milestonein the area of conservation.ln 1972, NationalParksandWildlife Conservation a wasestablished Section underthe Department of Forests, protected specifically manage to zones. t973, a comprehensive In conservation scheme was drawn up and 64

In wasestablished. the sameyear, a committeewas a separateoffice for National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act waspromulgated. policies.The NationalParksand Wildlife and Conservation set up to coordinateconservation Act was amended, and the National to wasempowered reserveany areafor protection.In 1974,the The government Park and Wildlife ConservationRegulationswere issuedin 1975. had by ecosystems been established coveringrepresentative In Nepaf four nationalparks and three wildlife reserves guards for law enforcementin .parks. ln I9'Tl, Wildlife Reserve 1973.ln 1975, the army replaced the forest In followed in 1979with the HimalayanParks Regulations. 1982'the National Parks and were passed, Regulations period,there were 26 species protectedanimals, of At Act Wildlife Conservation wasagainamended. the end of this protectedreptiles. In 1982,the Bardia National Park was nine speciesof protected birds, and three speciesof were and Ttvo new nationalparks-- SheyPhoksundo, Khapad-- and thE ParsaWildlife Reserve eastward. e:rtended was elevatedto the level of a departmentin Office createdin 1984.The National Parks and Wildlife Conservation 1980. Specialwildlife areashavebeen seated in Pakistanto preservethe fauna and flora of the country. Sevennational so havebeenestablished far. Additional high mountain national and park,72 wildlife sanctuaries 76 gamereserves parks are being planned.Lal SonharaNational Park has also been desipated as a Man and BiosphereReserve under UNESCO's MAB programme.Getting the Indus Dolphin habitat,KalashValley, Chitral Gol National Park Three and Khujerab National Park included in the World Heritage List of natural areasis under consideration. convention on international wetlands, wetlandsof Pakistanare now includedas international wetlandsunder the plans. without management as especially waterfowl habitats.Most protectedareasare, however,being managed togethercontrol a vastareaof of and the Department Wildlife Conservation In Sri Lanka,the ForestDepartment "other state proposedforest reserves, forest reserves, the country.The areasunder the Forest Departmentare the which are under the control of the Forest Department Biospherereserves forests",and the forest plantations. The reserve, primevalrain forest biosphere a The forestreserves. Sinharaja or are really parts of forest reserves proposed National Heritage WildernessAct. of 8,900h4 has been declareda nationalheritageunder the

Perc$ions of srengths and weahsses The cell working on wildlife under the Departmentof Forests, has Bangladesh donevery limited studyin biodiversity. The Departmentof Zoology,Dhaka University hasconducted conductedtwo studieson frogs and wetlandanimals. which are alreadyextinct or on the verge of eKinction. In March The havedetectedcertain species a few surveys. This order later enactedand amended,into the Order, was passed. Wildlife (Preservation) L973,the Bangladesh Wildlife The governmentconstituted the Bangladesh (Amendment) Act 19'14. Wildlife Preservation Bangladesh honourarywildlife officersin 1987.In 1973,a wildlife circle in the forpst Advisory Board n tg77 and appointed24 for departmentwas created.The territorial forest officersare alsoresponsible wildlife activities.In 1983,the wildlife (wildlife) still existsin the forest department.However, circle was abolished. The post of senior researchofficer by given the miserablesituation since 1983of wildlife conservatioqa programmeis under activeconsideration the departmenthas a plan to include The forest governmentfor appropriateinstitutional arrangements. Bangladesh programmes and give due importanceto it in a courseto be arrangedby the Forest Academy. wildlife preservation While substantialinformation on Bhutan'sflora and vegetationtypesis available,the same cannot be said of the fauna.Exceptfor the black neckedcraneon which a statussurveywas undertakenin 1987,there havebeen countqy's no studies on other wildlife speciesin the country. Studiesof the country's wildlife species,particularly those threatenedwith extinction,remain a major area of concernfor Bhutan. Priority speciesare the golden languor, takin, Asiatic elephant,tiger, cloudedleopardand agar wood. the Inspite of a full recogrritionof the need for nature Conservatiori, Bhutan governmenthas so far been able to provide only a skelet on staff to the Departmentof Forestry'swildlife division,which administersthe 12 protected areas.Bhutan is currently preparingan outline of the institutionalneedsof the wildlife division.Under the system of protected areas,an area of about 20 per cent of Bhutan'stotal land area has been demarcatedfor protection. Unfortunately,owing to severelimitations in personnel equipmentand transport. as well as the lack of accurate many of the areasare protectedonly on paper. Only three of theseareashave permanent boundarydemarcation, -- the Royal Manas National Park, the adjoining NamgyalWangchukWildlife Reserve,and the Mochu field staff shiftingcultivation due Forest.Many of the protectedareashavesufferedfrom degradation to encroachment, Reserve and areashavesomevillagesettlements other damaging Eventhe threeprotected and other forms of disturbances. A activitieswithin their boundaries. managementplan for only one protectedarea,the Royal ManasNational Park, activitieswas undertakenby the territorial of has been formulated.Till 1983,'monitoring wildlife management was taken over by two wildlife circles - the northern and divisionsof the forestry department.This responsibility the haveseverely constrained performanceof the circles. southernwildlife circles-- in April 1984.Lack of resources 65

Evaluation of the managementof protected areas is currently being undertaken under the Integrated Forest and ManagementProject. Conservation ln Indi4 the agenciesinvolved in the study and researchof the countr/s biological diversity include government organisationslike the Botanical Surveyof India and the Zoological Surveyof India, as well as NGOs. The Botanical and species, preparea nationaldatabase. of the Surveyof India surveys plant resouroes the country,lists endangered So It is also carrying out studieson selectedcritical ecosystems. far it hassurveyed over five per cent of the country. The balanceis to be completedby 2000.The BSI havebrought out three volumesof Red Data Book cnveing622 species.An inventory of all the endangeredspeciesis to be completed by the early 1990s.Multiplication of of is species being taken up under a scheme captivebreeding.The herbariaof the BSI has about three endangered lists endangered species, the and Surveyof India surveys faunal resources, The T,nr,lagtclil million plant specimens. collection.Certainpriority areashavebeenidentifiid like the Himalayanecosystem, maintainsthe nationalzoological and marine island ecosystems tropical rainforestsfor sunrey.Other institutions include Indian desert ecosystem, Wildlife Institute of India, Kerala Forest ResearchInstitute and the Bombay Natural History Institute of Science, in Socieg. Salim Ali Schoolof Ecology,a cntreof excellence the field of ornithologyand natural history hasbeen set up in PondicherryUniversitY. infrastructurefor studyand biomesand vastland area,the available Given India's diverseflora and fauna, numerous Modern There is needformore populationand communitylevel studies. adequate. tr3ining can hardlybe considered has biology,populationgeneticsand populationecolog5r, emerged incorporatingprinciplesof evolutionary ecolog5r, like conservation biolog5l This in turn hasgivenrise to disciplines during the pastthree decades. as a frontier science of to which havepractical relevance the management biologicaldiversity.Apart from a few institutions,study and are in are in research thesefrontier areasof ecolog5t inadequate the country.More training programmes neededfor like in and students traditionaldisciplines botanyand zoolog;tand for administrators the large contingentof teachers of (especially forests)who are guardians the countr/s biologicalwealth.Monitoring of India's biologicaldiversity of informationsystem needsto be introduced. A in improvement mostregions. goodbiodiversity is inadequate needs and While the Maldivian governmentis keen to protect its marine environment,it has an inadequateinstitutional of It infrastructureto carry out scientificinvestigations. has to resort to commissioning ad hoc studiesfrom time to of and enforcement its policies. time. Maldivesalso has to find a way for regular surveillance Nepal's managementof biological diversity have so far weighed heavily in favour of creating the necessary havebeen time and resources with moderninstitutions,considerable infrastructure.In view of Nepal'sinexperience well definedprocedures institutionswith Conservation and lost in the constantrestructuiingof departments sections. and jurisdiction are still in the processof formation. Within the existingsystem,attention must also be paid to in managers.While this has been recognised principle, and conservation creatinglinls beween local communitiEs usuallyresultsin considerable of difficult. The imperatives plannedconservation implementationhasbeenextremely a of on encroachment traditional systems resourceuse,which often becomes point of conflict, and the alienationof rural communities.A number of measuresmay be consideredfor enhancingthe performanceof conservation throughthe media.There is little or no awareness campaign couldbe launched programmes. First, a more concerted affectedvillages by Second, conducted centralagencies. exercises of at the grassroots the importanceof conservation should be identified and community developmentprogrammeslaunched to change the patterns of resource and possiblealternatives. of As consumption. a first step,this would involveoeating inventories affectedresources programmes,or by initiating new efforts can be facilitatedby linking them with other development Conservation projectsespecially through the NGOs. for of In Pakistan, National Council for Conservation Wildlife (NCCW) is the federal organisationresponsible the policy and economic planning provincial coordination,collaborationwith NGOs and liaison with international in Separatewildlife wings have been established Punjab and Sindh provinces. agenciesfor nature conservation. of with in Elsewhere Pakistaqwildlife staff is part of forestrydbpartments.B'aluchistan, vastresources wildlife, seems most deficient.Similarly, the Northern Areas and Federal Territory of Islamabadneed to develop their wildlife lntroductory fish Most of the staff ig however,untrained,immobile,low paid and, thus, handicapped. organisations. havebeen introducedin the Forestrycurricula of PakistanForest Institute.Three courses and wildlife management of weeksin-servicetraining courseis arrangedeveryyear for identification,surveyand management wildlife. All the provincial governments,North0rn Areas and Federal Capital Territory have enacted wildlife protection and and a which are a great improvementover past laws but they still have deficiencies management laws in the 1970s of by model law is being developed the National Council for Conservation Wildlife. Wildlife managementboards have been constitqted for advice and public participation. The Sindh Wildlife Board hasbeen very'activefollowedby thoseof Punjab and NWFP. IslamabadWildlife Management Management Kashmirand NorthernAreas haveremained whereas boardsin Baluchistan, the Board hasnot yet startedits activities inactive.WWF-Pakistanis the most active NGO. Others being World Pheasan:Association,Pakistan Wildlife

Foundation,Wildlife Conservation Conservation Societyof Pakistan, and Wildlife, Fish and EnvironmentSocietyof Pakistan. Televisionand presshavehelpedto createpublic awareness wildlife. Stampshavebeen issuedby the on postaldepartment.

for The Zoological SurveyDepartment of Pakistanis responsible surveys wild fauna.PakistanForest Institute, of Peshwar, also undertaken has surveys althoughits responsibilities educationand research. are Federaland provincial in organisations handicapped carryingout survey are and research because lack of trained personnel of and resources. Surveyand researchwork of academicnature has,however,been done on marine fauna by the ZoologicalSurvey Department.Waterfowl countsare taken regularlyby wildlife organisations. Statusand biologicalstudieson Indus pheasants, Dolphin, marineturtles,snowleopard,cranes, Sindhibex,urial, chimkaaraand markhor havebeencarried out by local and foreign scientists. With a view to seekinternationalcooperation, Pakistan becamea memberof the Conventionon InternationalTrade in EndangeredSpeciesof Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Pakistanis a party to the Conventionon Wetlands. Internationalcooperationin Man and BiosphereProgrammeand natural areasunder World Heritage Convention hasnot beenmea'ingfu[ perhapsowingto the longchannelof communication Pakistan. in The Ministry of Education is the focal point for UNESCO but natural areas and MAB reservesare the responsibilityof the Food and Agriculture Division.

faunahaveobtaineda new lease life because captivebreedingprogrammes. of Someextinctand endangered of Cheer pheasant and blackbuckshavebeen reintroducedin the Margalla hills and I-alsohanraNational Park, respectively. pheasant being multiplied for releasein non-pheasant is Korean king-beaked areas.Unfortunately,more emphasis Endemicpheasants hasbeengivento captivebreedingof this exoticbird than it deserves. havereceivedlessattention in from wildlife organisations. Jallo Park nearLahorehasmadea breakthrough captivebreedingof manyendangered animals.A pair of one-hornedrhinoceroshad been kept in LalsohanraNational Park for introduction. Excessive The situationis being reviewed to considera ban export of wild fauna has resultedin eKinction of certainspecies. on their export.

appearto be inadequate conserve wild species their habitats.Pressure resources to the and Current commitments on will further mount owing to an increasein population,and the aspirations the people to raise their standardof of living resultingin overexploitation naturalresources. There is no indicationof a policy to reducethe large number of of cattle on wild lands.Developmentactivitiesin the country are likely to pollute soil, water and air. Consequently, rapidly.There are no incentives the people living in the vicinity species and habitatsare bound to be damaged for of national parks and protectedareasand for thosewho could help in protectingwildlife. The local peoplecannot get a shareout of huntingfees.Adequateincentives alsonot available captivebreedingprogrammes the for are in privatesector. Natureconservation a new areain Pakistan. is Forr4altraining,exclusively wildlife management not yet provided in is in the country. As a result, trained personnelare not presentlyavailablefor wildlife survey,research,education, protection, management, conservation Most nationalparksand protectedareasare being managed and planning, plans.The conservation without management objectives not known to the staff or the people havinga direct or are indirectinterest.


Table 5.1

Biogeographicregions of India in Trans-Himalaya:The vegetationis sparse the alpine steppewith a high degreeof endemismin the regioq which region has the richestwild sheepand goat communityin eKendsinto the Tibetan plateau.The Himalayan-Tibetan the world. Thoseseenin the Indian portion includeurial, argali,bharal,wild yak, ibex and rnarkhor.Tibetan antelope Notable carnivores here are the snow leopard,Tibetan wolf, Pallas'cat, and Tibetan gazs,lle found seasonally. are marbled pole cat, pika and marmot. The rare black neckedcrane is a migratory bird seenin the north Himalaya. Ifimalaya The Himalaya by virtue of its location at the boundaryof many biogeographical regionsis one of the regionscome together richest areasof India in terms of habitat and species. Elementsof five major biogeographic here, namely, Palaearctic(for example,hippohae,Tibetan ass), Mediterrane:rn(for example, deodar, ibex), Takin), Indo-Malayan (for example,dipterocarpus, Indo-Chinese(for example,rhododendron, sun bear, gibbon), jungle fowl). The Himalayahas a high proportion of its own endemic India (for exampleeuphorbia, and Peninsular of tax4 for example,60 species balsamsand Himalayantahr. Severalecologicalgroupingscan be recogrisedwithin the latitudinal and longitudinal range of the Himalaya. In treesmerging altitudinal terms, theseinclude the lower sub-tropicalfoothills,which typicallyhavemixeddeciduous into chir pine and then banj oak. Iarger faunamay havesomeaffinity to the peninsula. The area is denselysettled and poorly protected at present.Next come the temperateareas,below 3,500metres.This zone has a complex for mixture of vegetationwith broad leaf mesophyllforest species, example,maplesand walnuts,sclerophylls such as moru and karshuoak, and a variety of coniferslike deodar,blue pine, spruceand fir, in an altitudinal sequence, Theseforestsare alsowinteringareas Typicallarge faunaare muskdeer and serow,with koklasand monalpheasants. region,which has a forest and then scrubvegetation for higher altitude faunasuchas tahr. Then there is sub-alpine with meadows herb rich grasslands. interspersed or Theseareasmerge into the alpine of birch and rhododendrons regions,which havea sparsercoverover 5,000m, where rock and snowdominate.Here musk deer, serowand tahr sharethe lower rangeswith bharal and, in the west,with ibex,which are more commonat higher levels.The pheasants the woodedareasgive waysto the snowcock. The panthergivesway to the snowleopardand wolf. The of black bear is replacedby the brown bear. axis,againseveral In longitudinal terms,that is, on an east-west characteristic communities be defined.These can are: A The wcsterndrier zonewith deodarand blue pine, with larger and more grassymeadows. species rich bovid fauna is rypical -- bharal, ibex, markhor, geral, scrowand tahr. The hangul, a distinct subspecies red de9r, of is restrictedto this region. missingthe ibex, markhor and hangul.The Sikkim stag is now The entral zone is poorer in large herbivores, considered extinct in Indian territory. The easternzonedoesnot havethe brown bear,bharaland tahr but it hasthe Mishmi takin as a large herbivore. The tree line is higher and arborealforest animalsare found at higher altitudes.The binturong,red pandaand There is a profusionof orchidsand the alpine areashave lessercatsare conspicuous easternfaunalelements. as an abundance shrubbyelementssuch as dwarf rhododendrons. of



Endemismis high in nearlyall groupsof animalsand plants.Somespecies widespread are alongthe Himalaya,others lists.The Sikkim stagmaybe already havetiny restrictedranges. Many largemammalsare on the endangerqd species lost from Indian territory, and the tahr may havegon'efrom Kashmir as also the westerntragopan.Populationsof The hangulstag is restrictedto one protectedarea. markhor, tahr havereachedseroware at very low densities. in Desertregion: The hot arid desertbelt in the northwestextends alongthe border with Pakistan, the Indian states of Rajasthan,Punjab and Gujarat. Vegetationis mainly shrubbywith speciesof Calligonum,Prosopis,Salvadora, grasslands occur in Jaisalmerand Bikaner. Di'rersityis relativelylow with only Capparisand Euphorbia.Exterrsive over the interior Aravali hills and Gir hills is 550 species flowering plants havingbeen recorded.The vegetation of (chinkara,four-headedantelope, mammalsof this regionare the antelopes forests. Characteristic of dry deciduous wolf and variousrodents.The wild assis endemicto the Rann of Kutch, while only blackbuckand nilgai), hyaena, 200-300 Asiatic lions survivein the Gir forestsof Gujarat.The Great Indian bustardis a highly endangered bird. The of overall bird diversityis high. Over 300 species residentand migratorybirds havebeen recordedin the wetlands in Forty three species reptileshavealsobeen listedin the desert of of the famousBharatpursanctuary Rajasthan. belt. 68

and lran to Middle Scmi-aridregior This areaof lndia hasstrongbiologicallinks with westernAsia (from Pakistan Balanites. like Acacia, Anogeissus, East) and northern Africa. Many of the plant groups are of African affinity gazelleand nilgai.The blackbuck, chowsingha, for are Capparisand Grewia.The larger herbivores bovidae, example The cervids,sambarand chital, are more restrictedto the better woodedhills and moist valley areas,respectively. -- lion (now restrictedto a small area in Gujarat), cheetah(now extinct), caracal,jackal and wolf have carnivores in analogues North Africa. pendulaforest on the gentler slopesof the One notable community of this regton rs the almost pure Anogeissus This forest is virtually restrictedto this zone and, where it doesoccur outside,it hill Aravali and associated ranges. rs rn a modified form, such as mixed with teak in north Madhya Pradesh. This is a transitionalzone from the true Deccancommunitiesof peninsularIndia of the south and east.There are rwo desertof the west and the extensive Gujarat areasof Rajasthan, within this area-- the Punjabplainsand the more heterogenous separate biotic provinces and west Madhya Pradeshtermed Gujarat' Rajwara. hills of the peninsulaare secondto N E India in biological We$ern Ghats The Western Ghats and associated has depleted,a good proportion of the rangein diversity.Although the forest coverover the ghatsin Maharashtra Karnataka,Kerala and Tamil Nadu is still well forested.There are two major vegetationdivisionsin the Western forest,while the easternbelt in the with evergfeen very hrghrainfall and covered Ghats-- a westernportion enjoyrng rain shadow consistslargely of deciduousforests.The evergteenforests are dominated by Mesu4 Palaquium. The upper reaches the of Memecylonand Syzygium. Persea, Holigarna,Diospyros, Hopea,Dipterocarpus, C)ullenia, forest patchesknown as sholas.The and stuntedmontaineevergreen ghats,above1,500m, usuallyhavegrassland Typically,the and forestsare Tectona,Terminalia spp..Lagerstroemia Anogeissus. dominanttreesin the deciduous The Western species. deciduous typeshave700-1,000 each,while the 2,000 species contain1,500sub-types evergreen from about 200 families.Of the 57 generaand 2,100 species Ghats. as a whole, harbour about 4,000angiosperm is to India most are confined the Western(ihats. The level of endemism highestin species endemicto peninsular (400species), The threemostcommonfamiliesare Poaceae south. hills the Agasthyamalai-Ashambu in the extreme (1'A in (250spp.out of 1000 India) The regionis alsorich in pteridophytes (320spp.)and Orchidaceae Leguminosae fauna is diverse.with many speciesendemic to this zone. Two spp. in Palani hills alone) and bryophytes. The hereare Nilgiri to monkey)are endemic the WesternGhats.Other species (Nilgiri languorand lion-tailed primates viable populationof grizzledgiant squirrel is found in the tahr. Nilgiri marten and Malabar civet, while the only gaur, sambar,wild dog, of Srivilliputhurhills. The WesternGhatsalsoharbour relativelylarge populations elephant, of subspecies birds are seenhere with 57 endemicforms. A and leopard,tiger and sloth bear. About 580 species family (uropeltidae)and sevengeneraof reptiles as well as five generaof amphibiansoccur only in the Western Ghats Deccan region: The Deccan plateau lying in the rain shadowof the Western Ghats is a semi-arid region with vegetationconsistinglargely of dry thorn and deciduousforests, dominated by Acacia, Anogeissus,Tectona, forest. of hills HardwickiaandAlbizia. Certainassociated of the plateauto the eastmay havepatches moist deciduous have of Lessthan 500species angiosperms disappeared. The climaxvegetationin the Deccanhasalmostcompletely sambar,gaur (in wetter belts), wolf, hyaena,sloth been recordedin this region.Faunatpically includesblackbuck, in giant squirrel survives the dry forestsalong the Cauveryriver in the Eastern bear,leopardand tiger. The girzz/red Ghats. and rivershave overmost of the Gangeticplains.The wetlands has Gangpticplaios Natural vegetation beendepleted of and over 20 species freshwaterturtles.The crocodiles(muggarand gharial),small numbersof Gangeticdolphin and foothillsretainssomenaturalvegetation plainsare alsorich in waterbirds.The Terai belt alongthe Himalayan typical Indo-Malayanfauna. NortheastIndic The easternHimalayaeKendingover north Bengal,Sikkim, Arunachal Pradpshand Assam,along hills of the Northeasternstatesis one of the richest regionsin biological diversity The entire with the associated is forest to alpine steppes, also found here. typsseenin the westernHimalaya,from deciduous rangeof vegetation is more tropical and more diversethan in the western Because the higher rainfall and lower latitude,vegetation of Himalaya.The floristic richnessof the easternHimalayanregion can be gaugedfrom the fact that over 50 per cent for described the whole of India in certainplant taa suchas orchids (650 out of l,lfi) types)bamboos(58 species out of lff)), and ferns (more than'500out of 1,100)are found here.An estimateof 3,000endemicdicot plantsin the Himalayanregion has been made,of which a major proportion would be found in the east.This region is also one of the major centresin the world for the origin of cultivatedplants.Wild relativesof banana,citrus, pepperand gibbon(whichis India'sonly ape),golden hoolock are cucurbits seenhere.The primatefaunaof this regionincludes pigtailmacaque and slow stumptail macaque, macaque, Assamese leaf languor,Phayre's monkey, languor. capped population wild buffalosis seen of while the largest rhinoceros thamindeerare endemic, and loris The one-horned of 536 species birds havebeen listed in the eastern here Takin, markhorand urial are found at higheraltitudes. Himalayas. 69

Islands The two major groups of islands are the Lakshadweepin the Arabian Sea and Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the Bay of Be'gd. In the Andanan and Nicobar Islands, the coastal belt has mangrovevegetation and coral reefs, while the islands themselvespossess some of the best preserrred evergreenforests of the country. Over 1,000speciesof flowering plants, including 220 endemicg arrdV12 speciesand subspeciesof birds including the Narcandom hornbill and Nicobar pigeon, are found here. C-Gtalrqgims The Indian coastline from Gujarat to West Bengal is about 5,500km long. Only small fragments of the natural vegetation of the coastal tracts remain today. Remnants of the dry evergreenforest tlpical ol the east coast can be seen in Tamil Nadtl" where balckbuck are found. Mangrove vegetation, characteristic of estuarine tracts, is seen at Pichavaramand a portion of the Sunderbans. The coastd belt is rich in bird fauna. The Rnnn of Kutch on the west coastis an impo(ant breedingground for flamingoes.Along the eastcoast,Point Calimere, pulicat lake and Chilka lake attract a large number of shore birds. Coral reefs are seen in the Gulf of Kutch and Gulf of Mannar. Among the phytoplankton are 55 speciesof dinoflagellateg 35 diatoms and 100 cynanophytesand other flagellates in the Indian Ocean. Many sea turtles nest along the coastalbelt. Special mention -ust be made of the dugongwhich can be seenin the Gulfs of Mannar and Kutch.

Tabb 52 E*inct, threatered and vnlneraHe speciesin Pakistan The Wildlife Enquiry CommitteeReport,'hasassessed 31 species mammals,20 of birds, and five of reptiles that of are threatenedin Pakistan-- to name a few, Marcopolo sheep,Urtial chimkaara" neelgaeall pheasants, cats, all cranes,lizards and some speciesof ducks. Eilind : cheetah,Asiatic wild dog; tiger, black buck, cheer pheasantar:eelmorst e{inct. Snow leopard, leopard cat, fuli"g cat, lyq hill fo:g desert fo4 commonotter, Indian smooth otter, stone marten, smaller kashmir flying quirrel, Indian wild ass,marsh crocodile etc., are xls6 laching ercinction. Thrcdened : Western tragopan, cheer pheasant,Great Indian bustard, Siberian white crane, Indus dolphin, snow leopar{ wolf, Olive Ridley, green turtle, gavial, Central Asian cobra are under constant threat of erinition. Vuherable: Dalmation pelica4 white tail eaglq peregrine falcon" leopard Asiatic wild ass,markhor, muggar and other turtles, Central Asian grey monitor, Indian python etq, are very wlnerable. Regardingplant species,Ulmuswallichiana is on the ruCN endangered in the Red Data Book. About 500 species list of plants are likely to be candidatesfor listing in the Red Data Book of Pakistan as the work on the status of phnt speciesprogressesin Pakistani uaiversities. Saassrca lapp (Cad;ls - kutch) is listed in Appendix-l of CITES and cannot be exported for commercial purposes.Obhan (Poptthtsenphomtica),Acacia senegal, Acacia catechv, Wan (Salvadoraoloides), Tuus baccata and Umus wallichiana arc also tnduded rn the hst of endangeredsrycres.

Tablc 53 Vegptation of Bhutan Main Ecofloristic Zones Tsne I Very moist tropical zone at low altitude (1,000m) BioclimaticCriteria Mean annual rainfall and more than 2,000 mm in southern (east-west)Bhutan; no. of dry monthslessthan 3 months;mean temperature the coldestmonth of lessthan 2IPC Mean annual rainfall less than 2,000 mm; no. of rainy days per 100-150 year; 3 to 5 months dry meantemperatureof coldest month about 15oC Mean annual rainfall less than 1",000mm; no. of rainy days 100-150per year; 4 to 6 dry monthsand meantemperature of month the dominant coldest 10-2fc Mean annualrainfall 1,000-2,000 mm; no. of rainy days 100-120 per yeari mean annual temperature lfC temperature of the coldestmonth lessthan 5'C; tl-5 dry months Mean annual rainfall 1,000 to 1,500 mm; of characterisedby snow precipitation and winter forest;meanannualtemperature 1fC;3-5 dry months Climatic data lacking. very long dry period; long frost period 3-6 months (perpetual snow line m) between4,800-5,000 Main VegetationTypes Moist dense evergreen a forests,woodland semievergreen plantations, degraded forestg mosaic cf cultivation and trees and shrubs

Zone II (a) Very moist sub-tropicalzone, (1,000to 2,000m)

Dense moist evergreen and semievergreen forestg open woodland,degradedforest areas of shifting cultivation,mosaicof cultivation Open woodlandsand Savannas

Zone II @) Sub-tropicalzone (1,000to 2,000m)

Tnne III Montane zone (2,000to 3,000m)

Dense evergreen oak forests, areasof shifting cultivation,blue pine forest, degradedblue pine, grassland

TnneIY Highest montane sub-alpine zone, (3,000to 4,000m)

Coniferous forests, bamboo thicketsArundinaria

7.oneY Alpine zone


Table 5.4 Proteded speciesin Nepat nine species birds and three typesof reptiles are in the protectedlist. of In Nepal, 26 tpes of mammalso red Mammals : One-hornedrhinoceros, panda,swampdeer,gaur,wild water buffalo, wild elephant,wild yak, hispid hare, musk deer, great Tibetan sheep,tiger, snowleopard,cloudedleopard,four-hornedantelope,blue buck, lynx, striped hyen4 Tibetan antelope, brown bear, pygny hog Assamesemonkey, wolf, lingsang leopard cat, pangolin, and Gangetic dolphin. Birds Impeyan pheasant(danphe),crimson-hornedpheasant(rnonal), Bengal florican (khar mujur), great pied and lesserflorican. black stort, white stork, saruscrane,cheerpheasant, hornbill (raj dhanesh), and goldenlizard. Reptiles: Pyhon, gbarial crocodiles,

Table 55 Pereptims of strengtbsand *patnesscs Colntry




1. N o a p p r o p r i a t e arrangements 2. Limited research institutional


1. Substantialinformation on floral and vegetationtypes

1. Insufficientinformation on fauna 2. Understalfedwildlife division 3. Shortage of equipment and transport facilities 4. I-ack of accurateboundarydemarcation of protectedareas 5. Protectionof park only on paper 6. Insufficient management plans for protectedareas 7. Lack of resources 1. Inadequateinfrastructure for research and training a Lack of training in disciplines like conservation biologSl, evolutionary biolog5r, population genetics and ecolog/,for teachers and students the of traditional disciplines and for forest administrators



1. Extensive inventories on flora and faunal resources ) Government and non government researchinstitutions 3. Captivebreedingof endangered species being undertaken


Establishment of Marine Research Section and Environment Research Unit. 1. Establishmentof wildlife management andconservation institutions, enactment of wildlife protectionand management laws and information on flora and fauna. Wildlife management and conservation institutional infrastructure developedat the federal level and in some provinces ) Availability of new training coursesin fish and wildlife management 3. Enactment of wildlife protection and management laws 4. Surveys wild fauna undertaken of 5. Captivebreedingand reintroductionof some wildlife species

Lack of regular surveillance and enforcementof policies


1. Lack of conservationinstitutions with well definedprocedures jurisdiction and ) Little or no awareness the grassroots at


1. Untrained, immobile and poorly paid staff L Inadequate attention paid to captive breedingof some endemicpheasants 3. Inadequate commitments to conserve wild speciesand their habitats 4. Lack of formal training exclusivelyin wildlife management . 5 . Lack of trained personnel for wildlife surveys, research, education, management,protection" conservation and planning 6. Lack of incentivesfor local people to protect wildlife 7. Inadequate incentives for captive breeding programmes in the private sector


Sri Lanka

L. 7



Identification 15 floristicregions of Areas of Identification 91 Protected of Establishment a gene bank ex-situ and in-situ of Keeninterest NGO - NatureWildlife Protection Societies

Lack of sufficient funds to improve institutionalstrengths ) Insufficientstaff J. Lack of trained personnel for administration research and 4. Insuflicient people's participation in protection measures 5. Illicit poachingand felling disrupting naturalecosystems development 6. Conflicting activities. l.

NA : Not Available


end mid countryWetZone Ef*, Lll t)ry Zone Zono l9 to* and mid countryIntermediatc I gli/tontane Wct Zone Intormediate Zone I f_lMontane i F lAridZone

BioclimaticZonesof Sri Lanka (Reproduced from Qlgate and Naturarvegetationof Sri Lanka by --' Wiie-s ghe (Sinhale in publication);friario lnrtituiu, Iu.onn.. Colombo: 1984)



17 pages

Report File (DMCA)

Our content is added by our users. We aim to remove reported files within 1 working day. Please use this link to notify us:

Report this file as copyright or inappropriate


You might also be interested in