Kerala is the land of the gods, mesmerizing in its beauty, enviable in its culture. This land is blessed with a wide and amazing variety of natural vegetation and wildlife ,the epitome of India’s ecosystem.
With flora ranging from Indian rosewood and Cassia in the Western Ghats to Bamboo and Wild Cardamom in the plains, Kerala has an immense cover of vegetation. The fauna here is also remarkable and a delight to tourists, with rare species like the Nilgiri Tahr and Lion Tailed Macaque found in large numbers.
An interesting feature in Kerala, which emphasizes that culture is inevitably interwoven with nature , is its sacred groves. The Kavu sacred groves are famous, lands of thriving vegetation. They also harbor birds and animals. The fear of violating religion and age old traditions have kept people away from these groves, allowing them to flourish. These contribute a lot to the conservation of ethnic biodiversity.
The variety of birds in Kerala are also worth mentioning. Kerala boasts of 453 species of birds, some of which are captivating in their beauty like the White cheeked barbet, the Malabar Trogon, Rufous Treepie, Black Naped Oriole , etc.
With an abundance of national parks and wildlife sanctuaries, Kerala has tried its best to conserve its innumerable flora and fauna. The sanctuaries serve as a safe haven for many endangered species like the Indian sloth bear and the gaur and help in conserving rare trees and plants.
In addition, Kerala houses a vast range of medicinal plants , that the government of Kerala has initiated a State Medicinal Plants Board for their conservation. Plants endemic to Kerala include the Jungle Jack and the Karivella. These plants are a symbol of the state’s rich heritage.
But the greed of mankind threatens to destroy this fascinating natural wealth of Kerala. Measures taken by the government to conserve this biodiversity include: creating suitable conditions in Eravikulam National Park to conserve the Nilgiri tahr, initiating six bird monitoring schemes to spot and study the endangered species; inculcating the ideas of Project Tiger;preparation of working plans to safeguard species under the supervision of the chief conservator of forests, etc
Kerala is the jewel of India in terms of rich biodiversity. It is in our hands to conserve its natural wealth for the future generation.