25,000 Trees Adopted by Covalent Laboratories Pvt.Ltd for FY 2018-19
Trees for Tribal Communities and Wildlife Habitation
Plantation of 25,000 native saplings in community land at the periphery of villages of Dongachintha, Ramnagar, Kannapur, Mathadipuda, Umapathikunta, Jhendaguda, Mothiramguda, and Luxettipet of Kawal Tiger Reserve covering Utnoor block of Adilabad district in the state of Telangana, India.
According to the Government of Telangana Tribal Welfare Department, the state has a very high concentration of tribal people like Gonds(2,97,846), Lambadas(20,46,117), Yerukala(1,44,128), Koyas(4,86,391), and Pradans(24,776) as of 2011 Census who are the indigenous community and are traditionally dependent on forests. The Food and Agricultural Organisation mentions the importance of Non-Timber Forest Produce in alleviating the poverty of the forest-dependent communities. Swathi Vadlamudi, in the March 11, 2018 issue of the Hindu, writes that the number of forest fires in the state are on the rise and to prevent them plantation of more trees to maintain young forests are advisable to reduce the number of flammable materials. The extreme condition of flood and drought have also increased in the state, that also needs to be checked. Some of the state’s worst cases of drought and water crisis and crop failures are due to lack of tree covers mentions the Hindustan Times (Apr 25, 2016) and the Hindu Business Line(April 03, 2017). Trees help in regulating micro-climates by releasing oxygen and absorbing carbon along with other particulate matters.
The most common tree species found in the area include teak, bamboo, rosewood, saal, red sandals, and tendu. The tree species planned to be planted include fruit yielding tree species like Jeedi (Semecarpus anacardium), amla (Emblica officinalis), Neradu/Jamun (Syzygium cumini), ber/regu (Ziziphus jujube), tendu/tuniki (Diospyros melanoxylon), etc. and timber/fuelwood species like nallamaddi (Terminalia tomentosa), tellamaddi/arjuna (Terminalia arjuna), Chenigee, kodesa (Cleistanthus collinus), etc. Species are selected by local communities in consultation with partner organization based on the local suitability, survivability, and local usage for fuelwood and fruits. Species are selected by local communities in consultation with partner organization based on the local suitability, survivability, and local usage for fuelwood and fruits.
The region has rich biodiversity with 673 species of plants and a variety of wild animals including 23 insect species, 10 species of amphibians, 34 reptile species, 267 bird species and 75 species of mammals. Common wildlife found in the areas are gaur (Indian bison), leopard, chital, blackbuck, chinkara, wild pig, chowsingha, wolf, hyena, and sloth bear. More than 250 bird species have been recorded in the region. Kawal sanctuary is a stronghold for the Grey Gallus and Red Gallus/Junglefowl.
The project intends to provide local employment opportunities to the local tribal population, dependent extensively on the forest especially the women. The restoration activities of the plantation area including the plantation work, weeding and hoeing of the saplings planted will provide an additional source of income to the local people. The village communities will be involved in the planning of plantation including in the process of species selection, developing management strategies for the protection of the plantation by the local plantation partner.
The project is also helping in mitigating the adverse impacts of drought and climate variabilities on local communities and their livestock population. Due to improved vegetation and water levels in the project areas, the agriculture and livestock grazing activities will get additional support. The project will also improve the access of local communities to the collection of fuelwood, and minor forest produces, thereby contribute to improving their income.
With the improved protection and management of the forest and other common land areas in addition to the plantation, natural regeneration of local species will get a boost. The increased vegetation in the region will help not just in controlling soil erosion, improve moisture conservation, and enhance water table in the region, contribute towards prevention of the severe drought and flood conditions of the state as well as the forest fires.