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Natural Vegetation & Wildlife
Natural vegetation and wildlife exist only in the narrow zone of contact between the lithosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere that we call bio sphere. In the biosphere living beings are inter-related and interdependent on each other for survival. This life supporting system is known as the ecosystem. Vegetation and wildlife are valuable resources. Plants provide us with timber, give shelter to animals, produce oxygen we breathe, protects soils so essential for growing crops, act as shelter belts, help in
storage of underground water, give us fruits, nuts, latex, turpentine oil, gum, medicinal plants and also the paper that is so essential for our studies. There are innumerable uses of plants and you can add some more.
Wildlife includes animals, birds, insects as well as the aquatic life forms. They provide us milk, meat, hides and wool. Insects like bees provide us honey, help in pollination of flowers and have an important role to play as decomposers in the ecosystem. The birds feed on insects and act as decomposers as well. Vulture due to its ability to feed on dead livestock is a scavenger and considered a vital cleanser of the environment. So animals big or small, all are integral to maintaining balance in the ecosystem.

Many agricultural species are grown for single products and for specialized uses, but forest trees are often grown for more than just pulp or timber, and even those products have multiple end uses. People began life on this planet as forest dwellers. They were food gatherers and depended on the forest for all their needs: food, clothing, and shelter. They gradually became food growers, clearing a small patch in the forest to grow food.


Food :

Plants are the basic producers which provide the human world with food to eat and survive. The food chain depends completely on these producers which is the only living component that can produce its own food. Much of human nutrition depends on land plants, either directly or indirectly.

Human nutrition depends to a large extent on cereals, especially maize (or corn), wheat and rice. Other staple crops include potato, cassava, and legumes. Human food also includes vegetables, spices, and certain fruits, nuts, herbs, and edible flowers. Beverages produced from plants include coffee, tea, wine, beer and alcohol. Sugar is obtained mainly from sugar cane and sugar beet. Cooking oils and margarine come from maize, soybean, rapeseed, safflower, sunflower, olive and others. Food additives include gum Arabic, guar gum, locust bean gum, starch and pectin. Livestock animals including cows, pigs, sheep, and goats are all herbivores; and feed primarily or entirely on cereal plants, particularly grasses.

Grazing animal husbandry :
Animal husbandry involves the process of increasing the population of cattle animals so as to provide their milk, meat, wool, hides etc. This involves the grazing of these cattle in vegetation areas. This is now leading to overgrazing which leads to soil erosion. But the vegetation is the main producer which provides the animals to feed.
Forests provide employment opportunities to rural and tribal folk and provides wood and to rural and tribal folk and provides wood and forest products like honey, herbs, fruits, berries and materials for domestic use. Other people of the urban areas are employed in the forests for lumbering and other vegetation products for industrial use.
Fodder from the forest forms an important source for cattle and other grazing animals in the hilly and the arid regions and during a drought. There are many varieties of grasses, trees, and shrubs that are nutritious for the livestock. Care is taken to see that trees poisonous to cattle are not grown. Trees that produce a large crown above the reach of cattle are preferred.
Wildlife preservation:
Forests are the natural habitat for wild life. Wildlife have four basic requirements: food, cover, water and space. Different wildlife species require different stages of forest growth to meet these needs. Several aspects of your property determine how many species can live and thrive in your forest - plant cover, harvest operations, water resources and topography.
Your forest may have streams, swamps, rivers, ponds, and areas that adjoin fields, pastures, roads and other openings. Even managing these "edges" of your forest is crucial to abundant populations of some wildlife species. The relationship between vegetation management and wildlife species habitat is well established. Hence forming a natural habitat for the fauna.
In many parts of the world wood is used for creating proper shelter against the elements. Items found in the wooded structures we call home are also made with wood, a plant product. Furniture, for example, is made up mainly of wood and cloth, from the fibers of plants. Walls in homes may be decorated with wallpaper, and many paints are derived from plant extracts.
Wind breaks and shelter belts:
Trees grown for wind breaks should be bushy and sturdy to withstand strong winds, both hot and cold. Along the Saurashtra coast in India, casuarina has successfully been planted to check degradation due to salt laden coastal winds. A species of prosopis, called P. juliflora, planted along the desert border in Haryana and Gujarat has successfully halted the advance of the desert.
Fences created with trees and shrubs are preferred in developing countries as they are cheap to maintain yet give protection. Species that have thorns or are prickly and have stiff branches and leaves that are not edible are preferred. These species should be fast growing, hardy, and long lived.
Domestic animals are tamed and cared for by man. Wild animals roam free in forests and mountains. Both are useful to us.
Animals keep the balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide in nature. They give carbon dioxide to plants that make oxygen and carbon dioxide in nature. They give carbon dioxide to plants that make food and release oxygen. They also provide us milk and other useful products and services.
We get milk from cows, buffaloes and goats. Milk is rich in proteins and facts. It is called completed food because young babies live wholly on milk. Curd, cheese, butter, ghee and ice- cream are made from milk.
Some people eat flesh and eggs of animals. But current scientific researches are against these. Flesh and eggs rot very soon and cause food poisoning and much communicable disease from the animals and the environment.
We get wool from the fleecy hair of sheep, yak, Angora rabbit etc. woolen clothes keep us warm in winter.
Honey is sweet liquid. It is made by honey – bees. Honey bees also make wax. They use this wax to make their home. Men use this wax to make candles, medicines.
Dog watches our house farms and animals. It is also a good companion people breed cats, rabbits, pigeons etc. for their beauty and grace. Parrot is beautiful bird which can talk like humans.
People have been using cattle dung as manure and fuel. But now gobar-gas is made from it and the remaining waste it is used as good manure. This manure helps us to maintain the fertility of the soil.
During the last few decades, wildlife all over the country has come under intense pressure. Habitat destruction poses the most important threat to the survival of wildlife. Pollution, climate change, deforestation, industrialization and population explosion have destroyed the natural habitat of wildlife. Hunting, habitat reduction and land degradation have threatened the biodiversity in the industrial world.
Large scale poaching of animals for their fur, skin, tusks, horns, antlers, and other body parts is responsible for the rapid extinction of many animals. Animals are sold on a large scale in international markets for handsome amounts of money. Animals are in great demand in zoos and as pets. They are also used in scientific research and experiments. Smuggling rare endemic species out of the country illegally is increasingly common.
Today most of the animal species of the world stand at the edge of extinction. Over 600 species are officially acknowledged to be endangered. Large animals are especially at risk form habitat destruction. Their natural population tends o be quite small, because each individual requires proportionately more territory.
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