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Woody species diversity in northern Western Ghats with special
reference to Chandoli National Park
Composition, abundance, and diversity of woody plant species at
Chandoli NP was inventoried in detail by establishing 10 transects
totaling an area of 5 ha. All the plants above =15 cm GBH were
enumerated. A total of 4252 stems were sampled which represented 131
species belonging to 85 genera and 44 families. We have identified a
new sub-type Memecylon-Syzigium-Olea of already defined Memecylon-
Syzigium-Actinodaphne floristic series in literature. Out of the
total species encountered in CNP, majority of the species show
zoochory (82 %), followed by autochory (14%) and anemochory (11%).
Non-Metric Multidimensional Scaling (NMS) was performed to identify
gradients affecting woody species composition and diversity patterns
at regional scale. It revealed that (a) species composition is
governed by a strong temperature- recipitation gradient (b) WGs
endemic richness and abundance is correlated with Evergreen (EVG) to
deciduous (DCD) ratio.
Wild Edible Plants: Documentation and
Wild Edible Plants have been traditionally used as a source of
subsistence by rural communities. These plants are getting wiped out
because of habitat destruction and changing trends in agriculture.
Though many attempts have been made to document the diversity of
WEPs, very few have touched upon the nutritional aspect. Present
paper documents nutritional qualities and diversity of WEPs at
Shilimb, located in the northern Western Ghats. Fortnightly visits
were made to the study area along with local knowledgeable
individuals. Information about collection, religious significance
and folk tales related to sustainable harvest were recorded through
semi-structured interviews. So far we have recorded 50 species
belonging to 30 families; Fabaceae and Cucurbitaceae being the most
dominant ones. One third of the recorded WEPs are found only during
monsoon. While 17% have folk medicinal importance, 35% serve as
butterfly host plants. The plants were subjected to nutritional
analysis comprising of total soluble proteins, total carbohydrates
and moisture content. Market potential of these plants is being
explored through feasibility studies. As a follow up process such
WEPs can be further taken up for cultivation through self-help
groups and kitchen herbal garden programmes.
Study of patterns of accumulation of
Camptothecin in Nothapodytes nimmoniana (Grah.) Mabb. and
Ophiorrhiza sp. from Western Ghats of India.
Present study looks into Camptothecin (CPT) variation across plant
parts and habitats from Nothapodytes nimmoniana and
Ophiorrhiza sp. Stem and root bark samples were collected from
three different localities (min. 15 per population for
Nothapodytes and 5 for Ophiorrhiza) from northern Western
Ghats and subjected to CPT analysis using HPLC to identify 'plus
specimens' in terms of CPT content. On average CPT varies from 0.1
to 0.3 % in Nohapodytes while some individuals exceptionally record
high concentratin such as 1.1%. Fruits were identified as potential
source of CPT. CPT content in root samples of Ophiorrhiza sp.
was found comparable to Nothapodytes.
Studies on ecology and reproductive biology of Nothapodytes
Of recently, several species from the Western Ghats of India are
gaining international importance due to their newly identified
pharmacological and curative properties. Modern medicine is also
exploiting some of these resources as major raw material, sometimes
leading to over harvests and threatening the species with
extinction. One such medicinal plant is Nothapodytes nimmoniana,
also known as Mappia foetida, an endangered species from the
northern Western Ghats of India. Present work deals with the study
of ecological parameters of N. nimmoniana with notes on its
phenology, breeding biology, current status and comments on its
economic importance, trade potential and habitat preferences. Since
these habitats varied from open scrubs to tropical evergreen
forests, from privately owned degraded sites to strictly conserved
Protected Areas, N. nimmoniana individuals could be studied
in contrasting and varying arrays of conditions.
Urban Consumption DISASTER: Excess Carbon Budget of Pune City,
The present investigation projected sequestration potential of trees
from our biomass surveys and was compared with literature derived
emission potential of socioeconomic strata with Pune census data.
These estimates were mapped for each sq. km. grid according to the
consumption pattern of various economic groups and tree cover
density respectively. As tree cover is estimated to trap only 2 % of
the emissions, the remaining 98 % overload may be contributing to
the global warming. Rich people generate 34 % of above emission with
per capita emission, which is eight times that of the poor. Thus,
besides promoting tree plantation as a mitigation measure,
curtailing urban consumption is indispensable, besides switching
from private transport to public, and promoting biofuels and
bioconsumables, to reduce about 25% of Carbon emissions.
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