Trees for Tigers®
Similipal National Park, Odisha, India
Project PurposeTrees for Forests™ & Wildlife
Plant Now Location
The plantation project is implemented in the fringes of Similipal National Park in the Gram Panchayats of Asana, Kuchilaghati, Kendua, Rangamatia, Gundihudi in Mayurbhanj District, eastern Indian state of Odisha.
Deforestation and forest degradation are the major concerns in maintaining the ecological balance and conserving forest resources that bear global significance. In India, in the last century, the forests have undergone significant changes due to several anthropogenic as well as natural factors including increased population pressure. The net decline in the forest cover of Odisha alone is 40.5 percent of the total forest from 1935 to 2010 (CS Reddy et al). Several studies have revealed that the large-scale deforestation of dry deciduous forests was conducted in this region. This has resulted in a reduction in rainfall, a heavy increase in the frequency of floods and droughts, and topsoil erosion. Environmentally sound forests help in maintaining the ecological balance and for that, the area coverage of dense forests has to be increased.
The National Tiger Conservation Authority in India has identified a potential link between the migration of wild animals from the Similipal Tiger Reserve to the Satkosia Tiger Reserve and has proposed a corridor. It is a very long corridor but is highly fragmented due to intense mining activities, power stations and a large number of human habitation. Similipal National Park is also one of UNESCO’s recognized biosphere reserves and home to a number of endangered species of animals, reptiles, birds and species of plants and herbs. In this context, our local planting partner Impact Guru Foundation also suggests that the promotion of primary forests becomes essential to maintain the ecological balance as planting trees help in regulating micro-climates by releasing oxygen and absorbing carbon along with other particulate matters.
Trees for Tigers®
Forests are vital for the survival of the tiger population in Odisha. The lush and dense forests provide tigers with a comfortable natural habitat. Planting trees also provides shade, reduce water and air temperatures and contribute to the overall health of tigers. These natural habitats are not only well suited for big mammals like tigers but also attract other herbivores animals like elephant and hill mynah, leopard, sambar, barking deer, gaur, jungle cat, wild boar, four-horned antelope, giant squirrel and common langur. Grey hornbill, Indian pied hornbill and Malabar pied hornbill are also found here. Where tigers thrive, so do other diverse plants and animals. Such a natural habitat provides a host of animals as prey for tigers.
Sub-adult male tigers are forced by their fathers to move out of areas where they are born and find new territories. These dispersing sub-adult males are often the ones that use a corridor and get to the adjacent protected area in search of territories. While passing through these corridors, tigers confront a range of challenges such as hostile villagers, retaliatory poisoning of livestock kills, poaching of tigers and prey, and electrocution by live wires, apart from road and rail traffic. For this purpose, forest cover in the buffer zone will provide a natural habitat for tigers to find their new territories and reduce human-animal conflict.
Biodiversity - Black (Melanistic) Tigers of Orissa
Similipal National Park is home to the only known habitat of the elusive melanistic, or black, tigers. Similipal is one of India’s oldest tiger reserves. Declared in 1973 under Project Tiger, it contains 2,750 sq km of forest and is prime habitat for tigers, prey species and elephants A group of researchers from Bengaluru-based National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS) has begun its study into why a small chunk of tigers found in Odisha are melanistic. According to the Down To Earth magazine, Normal tigers are giving birth to black or melanistic tigers and even normal cubs are being delivered by the black or melanistic tigresses. An increase in the number of melanistic tigers holds great implications for future conservation.
In this tree plantation initiative, species like Karanj (Millettia pinnata), Shisham (Dalbergia sissoo), Mango (Mangifera indica), Earleaf Acacia (Acacia auriculiformis), Lemon (Citrus limon) and Jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus), Teak (Tectona grandis), Amla (Phyllanthus emblica), Simarouba, Mahanimba (Melia azedarach) will be planted.
In recent years, several scientific reports have pointed out that the loss of biodiversity and their habitats have increased drastically due to human-induced interventions in the natural environments; implementation of the large-scale tree plantation project is a simple and effective approach in preventing further ecosystem degradation and habitat loss, which at the same time promotes sustainable resource use among the locals. Planting trees helps to reclaim degraded and deforested patches into a healthy primary forest, improving wildlife habitats and ecosystem services.
The project region is inhabited by a variety of tribal communities. Prominent among these are Bhumija, Gondas, Kolha, Santhala and Mankadia. Most of them are settled agriculturists and supplement their income by being dependent on various forest resources. Many conservation practices associated with these tribes have been on the decline due to various factors including the increasing influence of modern civilization, increasing human population and decreasing wildlife availability (WWF-India); thus, the large-scale tree plantation will improve the ecosystem services with access to local communities to the collection of fuelwood, and another minor forest produces, thereby also contribute to reviving the traditional conservation cultures. Moreover, the increased vegetation in the region will help not just in controlling soil erosion, but will also improve moisture conservation, enhance the water table in the region, and contribute towards the prevention of the severe drought and flood conditions of the region and forest fires.
|Name of the Company
|Number of Trees Adopted
|DHL Logistics Private Limited
|HDFC LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY LIMITED
|Integreon Managed Solutions (India) Private Limited