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Concerted effort for conservation of rainforests urged

Concerted efforts are the need of the hour to conserve the rich contiguous rainforest patch of Dihing-Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary and its adjoining Upper Assam`s Tinsukia and Dibrugarh districts.



Guwahati: Concerted efforts are the need of the hour to conserve the rich contiguous rainforest patch of Dihing-Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary and its adjoining Upper Assam`s Tinsukia and Dibrugarh districts.

"The presence of this valuable stretch of tropical rainforest puts a responsibility on us to protect it and chalk out a sustainable model for the judicious utilisation of its immense resources," noted wildlife conservationist Soumyadeep Dutta of `Nature`s Beckon` said during the launch of a pictorial book `Rainforests of Assam` here today.

The rainforests cover more than 500 sq km of tropical forest land spread across Joypur, Upper Dihing and Dirak Reserve forests and only 111.19 sq km of this area includes the Dihing-Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary.

Dutta pointed out that Nature`s Beckon has successfully created and carried forward the drive for future protection and conservation of the rainforests of Assam and it was this mass movement that led to the creation of Dihing-Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary in 2004.

He also stressed the socio-economic development of the fringe communities, as their all-round growth and progress play a very decisive role in the real conservation of rainforests for posterity.

"We have worked for the growth and progress of the fringe communities and have alreadey initiated eco-tourism in the fringe ethnic villages close to the sanctuary called Tai-Phake eco-tourism camp," he added.

The concept of home-stay has also been initiated from January this year in Tipamphake village, where arrangements were made for the stay and visit of tourists to the ethnic villages and the rainforests, Dutta said.

"This concept could emerge as an effective model for the socio-economic development of the fringe communities and in the long-run help in the protection and promotion of the rainforests of Upper Assam," Dutta added.

The rainforests of Upper Assam are home to several endangered species including the Hoolock Gibbon, the only species of apes found in the country, besides seven of the eight species of non-human primates found in the state, and more than 300 species of birds.

It is probably the only bird habitat in the country which accommodates as many as five species of Hornbill.

Altogether eight species of wild cats are found in these forests including the Clouded Leopard, Leopard Cat, Golden Cat, Jungle Cat, Fishing Cat and Marbled Cat.

These forests are characterised as a multi-storied structure with the vegetation comprising three to four layers and the trees varying in height from 65 to 150 ft.

The pictorial book `Rainforests in Assam` captures the beauty of the forests through the lens of five eminent photo- artists and highlights the importance and significance of rainforests, its imminent threats and the rainforest conservation movement of Assam.

From Zee News

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