Monitoring of Biosphere Reserves

The Biosphere Reserves (BRs) are internationally designated landscapes / seascape units under UNESCO`s flagship programme; “Man and Biosphere (MAB)”. To undertake activities of biodiversity conservation and development of sustainable management aspects, biosphere reserve area demarcated into three zones viz. core, buffer and transition. The aim of the project is to provide information on conservation effectiveness after declaration of Biosphere Reserves.

This project has generated baseline spatial information on forest types, forest canopy density and land cover on 1:50,000 scale at every five years interval for four Biosphere Reserves (Nilgiri and Agasthyamalais of Western Ghats, Similipal of Eastern Ghats and Kachchh of Arid zone, Gujarat). Dry deciduous forest in Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve is one of the predominant forest type which was affected by frequent fires and aggressive colonization of invasive alien species - Lantana camara. The spatially explicit maps generated would be useful for restoration of degraded forests affected by fires and biological invasion.