Uttarakhand Forest Dept conserves 73 rare, threatened, endangered plant species

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The research wing of the Uttarakhand Forest Department on Saturday informed that it conserved 73 rare, threatened, and endangered plant species as well as 54 plant species that are endemic to Uttarakhand and Indian Himalayan Region.

The research wing of the state forest department had released a comprehensive report on the various plant species conserved by it on the occasion of World Environment Day.

Uttarakhand is the only state in the country that has started releasing such reports annually, the department said.

Sanjiv Chaturvedi, IFS and head of Research Wing, said, “This comprehensive report is being released to counter the concept of ‘plant blindness’ and to create awareness about conservational issues and threats to plant biodiversity, on which our very survival depends.”

The report, consisting of 264 pages, has a detailed list of 1576 plant species conserved by the Research Wing of Uttarakhand Forest Department at its various centers across the state. It includes 415 tree species out of which 107 ficus species and 22 pine species; 130 shrub species including fifteen types of Tulasi, 87 orchid species, 213 cactus, and succulent species, 87 grass species, 37 bamboo species, 96 fern species, 130 herb species, and 45 aquatic species, apart from 87 lichen and 30 moss species.

The report contains an entire spectrum of plant kingdoms ranging from trees and shrubs to moss and lichen species.

“Out of 1576 conserved species, around 500 species have medicinal values. Some of the prominent species include Tejpat, Kalpavriksha, Brahma Kamal, Sanjeevani, Badri Tulsi, Butterfly Orchid, Snow Orchid, Krishanvata, Rudraksha, Lemon Grass, Kewra, Paras Peepal, Sindoori, Apees, and Trayamana,” the report said.

“Around 53 species endemic to Uttarakhand and Himalayan region are found only here in the entire world. Plants are becoming extinct at an alarming rate because of forest felling, illegal extraction, forest fire, grazing, construction,” it said.

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