News-CRUX-10     1st February 2024        

Context: Two more wetlands from Tamil Nadu and total five sites have been added to the Ramsar list taking the total tally to 80, and 16 in Tamil Nadu which is the highest in India.

oLongwood Shola reserve forest in Nilgiris and Karaivetti bird sanctuary in Ariyalur are the new additions.

Longwood Shola Reserve Forest

  • Location: The site is situated near Kothagiri town, adjacent to the eastern slopes of the Nilgiri mountain range. It encompasses intermittent freshwater marshes and streams within a tropical montane forest known as "shola."
  • Unique Shola Forest: This site represents the last remaining natural shola forest near Kothagiri, showcasing remarkable biodiversity with a focus on high species endemism.
  • Rich Endemic Species: The area boasts around 40 tree species, four reptiles, 14 frogs, and 14 birds that are exclusive to the Western Ghats region. Notable plant species include Actinodaphne bourneae, Psychotria nilgiriensis, and Cinnamomum wightii.
  • Conservation Significance: It serves as a critical conservation area for endangered species such as the black-chinned Nilgiri laughing thrush, Nilgiri blue robin, and the vulnerable Nilgiri wood-pigeon.

Karaivetti Bird Sanctuary

  • About: It is a protected area located in the Ariyalur District of the state of Tamil Nadu, India.
  • Home to migratory birds: Bar-headed goose, Northern pintail, White Stork, Northern shoveler, Garganey, Blue-winged teal, Osprey and common sandpiper.

Ramsar Convention

  • The Ramsar Convention, signed in 1971 in Iran and in force since 1975, is an intergovernmental treaty dedicated to the conservation and sustainable use of wetlands.
  • Recently on the eve of World Wetlands Day 2024, India has increased its tally of Ramsar sites (Wetlands of International Importance) to 80 from existing 75 by designating five more wetlands as Ramsar sites. 
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