Initiative to conserve sacred groves

Sun Online Desk

31st May, 2021 12:32:57 PM printer

Initiative to conserve sacred groves

For hundreds of years, ‘Kovil Kaadugal’ or sacred groves had been taken care of and maintained by the native communities residing there, who made use of the age-old traditions and information to preserve them.

Nevertheless, many sacred groves within the northern area at the moment are quick deteriorating attributable to speedy urbanisation and land shortage. Now, a “non-profit” organisation, Indigenous Biodiversity Basis (IBF), has provide you with an eco-restoration initiative in a bid to preserve these inexperienced patches of land.

Based on Environmental Info System (ENVIS), Puducherry, there are 163 sacred groves on the Marakkanam-Puducherry-Cuddalore stretch. A research on 15 samples out of 163 groves reported 252 plant species belonging to 176 genera, 62 households, 136 taxa and 6 lianas.

The groves had been such various and host species of a few of the final remaining repositories of critically endangered TDEF. IBF has recognized 88 uncommon, endemic and close to threatened plant species present in TDEF for conservation as a part of ‘Uyir Moochu’initiative.

The distinctive eco-restoration initiative will concentrate on restoration and conservation of those plant species in biodiversity hotspots in TDEF, the second most endangered forests subsequent solely to mangroves.

Ok. Raman, founding father of IBF mentioned that although most of those plant species had been discovered solely within the wild and in fringes of forest patches, they’ve been displaced and brought over by invasive species. “Volunteers from IBF together with Sekar, a conventional seed collector from Auroville have gathered seeds of uncommon, endemic and near-threatened native species present in sacred groves on the stretch from Puducherry to Ramanathapuram. The vegetation grown in nurseries will probably be launched in to their pure habitat and areas with decreased depend,” he mentioned.

‘Protected’ by Ayyanar

Earlier, a number of sacred groves on the Puducherry-Cuddalore stretch housed a number of deities particularly Ayyanar revered by the native communities. The groves remained untouched attributable to non secular beliefs and had a number of plant and animal species. However they’ve now been razed and changed with concrete buildings, he mentioned.

“Our important goal is to strengthen the bond that the native communities shared with the sacred groves. We will probably be educating the locals on the significance of those groves and guarantee their involvement within the conservation plan to guard the remaining patches,” says Mr. Raman.

“IBF has already raised totally different species and they’re now in excessive demand. The Malai Poovarasu is one such endemic species and there are lower than 500 species within the wild.”

“These uncommon and endangered plant species present in sacred groves harbour wealthy biodiversity and are wealthy repositories of useful medicinal vegetation. The groves additionally help all kinds of birds and small mammals together with the Palm Civet, Slender Loris and the Rusty Noticed Cat, the world’s smallest automotive,” says S. Vimalraj, a naturalist.

The groves act as an efficient carbon sink and are additionally self-sustainable ecosystem, which reinforce scientific causes for conservation, says Prabhu N. Ponmudi, member of Uyir Moochu initiative.

The Division of Forests might additionally take up planting of those uncommon species on the coastal belt from Cuddalore to Ramanathapuram. This is able to not solely guarantee safety but additionally improve the biodiversity of the groves, Mr. Vimalraj provides.

 

Source: The Hindu


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