Class 10 : Key Concepts- Forest and Wildlife Resources Class 10 Notes | EduRev
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- Humans and living organisms form a complex web of ecological system in which we are dependent on the system for our own existence.
- Forests play a key role in the ecological system as primary producers on which all other living things depend.
Fig: A NASA photo of India's North Sentinel Island covered with forest
- India is one of the world’s richest countries in terms of its vast array of biological diversity and has nearly 8% of the total number of species in the world.
- At least 10% of India’s recorded wild flora and 20% of its mammals are on the threatened list.
- Based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) the existing plants and animal species can be classified as Normal, Endangered, Vulnerable,Rare, Endemic and Extinct species.
- The greatest damage inflicted on Indian forests was during the colonial period due to the expansion of the railways, agriculture, commercial and scientific forestry, and mining activities.
- Large-scale development projects have also contributed significantly to the loss of forests.
- The destruction of forests and wildlife is not just a biological issue but is strongly correlated with the loss of cultural diversity.
- Conservation in the background of rapid decline in wildlife population and forestry has become essential.
- Conservation preserves the ecological diversity and our life support systems — water, soil and air.
- The Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act was implemented in 1972.
- The conservation projects focus on biodiversity rather than on a few of its components.
Fig: Forest around Nohkalikai fall in Meghalaya, an eastern state of India
- For the purpose of administration, forests have been classified into three types— (i) Reserved forests (ii) Protected forests (iii) Unclassed forests.
- Reserved Forests are forests which are permanently earmarked and regarded as most valuable for the conservation of forests and wildlife resources either for the production of timber or other forest produce. Grazing and cultivation is seldom permitted in a reserved forest.
- In Protected Forests, these rights are allowed subject to a few minor restrictions.
- Unclassed Forests consist of inaccessible forests or unoccupied wastes belonging to both government and private individual and communities.
- In India, forests are also home to some of the traditional communities.
- Belief of tribes that all creations of nature must be protected have led to preservation of virgin
- forests in pristine form called Sacred Groves (the forests of Gods and Goddesses).
- In India, sacred qualities are often ascribed to springs, mountain peaks, plants and animals which are closely protected.
- Chipko Movement in the Himalayas resisted deforestation. Farmers, and citizens’ groups like the Beej Bachao Andolan in Tehri and Navdanya have shown that adequate levels of diversified crop production without the use of synthetic chemicals are possible and economically viable.
- In India, Joint Forest Management (JFM) programme furnishes a good example for involving local communities in the management and restoration of degraded forests.