Giant trees - foundational pillars of biodiversity
Greetings from India!
While the whole world is recovering from impacts of COVID-19, we all are looking for sources of strenghts, hope and resilience. It is often the case that we find those in nature. Our field team recently came across some amazing individual specimens of Giant trees in the northern Western Ghats These trees and its inhabitants tell us how to survive and co-exist during a calamity.
The west coast of Maharashtra, India was hit by Nisarga Cyclone in June this year. It caused unprecendented damage to the assets of local communities and brought misery to millions residing in these areas. The impact of this cyclone on forests and trees in surrounding areas remained completely unknown as they are not part of the mainsteam economy and thus their loss unfortunatley is not considered as economic loss.
Our teams' survey of these forests came out with some disturbing and some interesting findings. Many of the giant trees while standing tall had lost their canopies, many lost their huge branches which once were roosting sites for many birds and producing fruits in immense numbers.
Irrespective of these odds, these trees and its inhabitants- birds remained strong and resilient. A highly intriguing case here is of giant specimen of Alstonia scholaris- a native tree of the Western Ghats.
This tree is used for nesting by White rumped vulture- a critically endangered bird and a Great hornbill - a vulnerable species at the same time. Great hornbill in fact is called as farmer of a forests thus its survival is key to health of the surrounding forest.
While it was an amazing finding for our team, it also shows how biased approaches to conservation fail to appreciate the value of the giant trees in saving endangered species.
We are very glad and satisfied with the fact that our approach to conservation is not discrimanatory in nature and thus we are able to appreciate and save these wonders of mother nature.
Your unwavering support to and interest in this initiative is critical for saving these key supporting structures of biodiversity and forests.
Thanks and wish you a very happy Christmas!
Giant trees facilitate rare co-existence
Giant trees- the only hope for saving biodiversity