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Systematics Section / ASPT

Das, A. P. [1].

Flora of Darjiling Hills in West Bengal (India): Present Status and Conservation.

Hills of Darjiling (135- 3660 m) constitute a part of the Singalila range of Eastern Himalaya. The richness of the flora of this region is well known which has attracted plant lovers, explorers and hunters almost equally for the last three centuries. The processes of evolution worked in this part of the Himalayas almost in an undisturbed condition for millions of years assisted by much varied but extremely favorable climatic conditions and that have produced innumerable new species, a good proportion of which are still endemic for the region. When almost tropical vegetation is found in the foot-hills, it is sub-alpine in high altitude areas especially above 3000 m. The fast dwindling forest cover in Darjiling Hills, particularly during last three or four decades, is mostly due to uncontrolled anthropogenic activities. Clear-felling, legal or illegal, unwise forestation programs, increased pollution, soil erosion, plant introduction and subsequent naturalization etc. quickly changing the vegetative scenario of this area. Newly evolved species do not find proper corridor for migration to find out a suitable habitat for its survival. Also, the ever increasing list of missing plant species from Darjiling is a matter of much concern. Strategies essential for the effective conservation of Darjiling flora and the difficulties in its implementation also have been discussed in the present paper.

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1 - North Bengal University, Taxonomy Lab, Botany Department, 734430 Shiv Mandir,, Darjiling District, West Bengal, , India

Darjiling Flora.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: 21-1
Location: 410/Hilton
Date: Monday, August 15th, 2005
Time: 3:30 PM
Abstract ID:82

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