Forest and Wildlife Resources Notes Class 10th CBSE


Natural Vegetation:-

Natural Vegetation refers to plants growing naturally in any region controlled by the climate of the region.


The cluster of trees, which grow close to each other are called forests. They contain either one particular type of plant or of different types.


The term Biodiversity or Biological Diversity includes all forms of life, i.e, plants, animals, and micro-organisms, present on the Earth. This term was coined by E.O. Wilson.


The total vegetation or plant cover of a region.


The animal life of a given area.

Flora and Fauna in India:-

A blend of subtropical and tropical characteristics in India has blessed her with about 47,000 species of plants and 90,000 species of animals. India is one of the 12 mega biodiversity countries of the world.

Different categories of existing plants and animal species( based on IUCN):-

1. Normal Species:-

Species which are found in sufficient numbers, and do not face any threat to their survival. For example cattle, sal, pine, rodent, etc.

2. Endangered Species:-

Species which are near to the verge of extinction. Such species are not likely to survive if the negative factors continue to operate. Example of such species is Blackbuck, crocodile, Indian wild ass, Indian rhino, lion-tailed macaque, Sangai, etc.

3. Vulnerable Species:-

These species are likely to move into the Endangered categories in the near future if the negative factors continue to operate. Examples of such species are blue sheep, Asiatic elephants, Gangetic dolphins, etc.

4. RareSpecies:-

Species with small numbers that may move into the Endangered or Vulnerable category are called Rare Species. For example - The Himalayan brown bears, Wild Asiatic buffalo, desert fox, hornbill etc.

5. Endemic Species:-

These are species which are only found in some particular areas, usually isolated by natural or geographical barriers. For example Andaman Teal, Nicobar pigeon, Andaman wild pig, Mithun in Arunachal Pradesh etc.

6. Extinct Species:-

These are the species which are not found after searches of known or likely areas where they may occur. Examples of such species are- the Asiatic Cheetah, Pink-head duck etc.

Factors responsible for the depletion of forests in India:-

1. Expansion of the railways, agriculture, commercial and scientific forestry and mining activities during the colonial period
2. Expansion of agricultural land even after independence and mining activities
3. Development of river valley projects
4. Shifting cultivation
5. Grazing and fuelwood collection
6. Industrial development and urbanisation

Reasons for the decline of wildlife:-

1. Habitat destruction
2. Hunting and poaching
3. Over-exploitation of forest and wildlife resources
4. Environmental pollution and poisoning
5. Incidence of the forest fire.

Other important causes of environmental destruction:-

1. Unequal access and inequitable consumption of resources.
2. Differential sharing of responsibility for environmental well-being.

Negative impacts of environmental degradation:-

1. Ecological imbalance
2. Unemployment among tribal people
3. Poverty
4. Draught
5. Flood
6. Biological disturbance
7. Loss of cultural diversity

Measures of conservation of forests and wildlife:-

1. Ban on overgrazing
2. Ban the cutting of trees
3. Afforestation
4. By making and enforcing laws to conserve forests and wildlife
5. By making national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and biosphere reserves
6. By developing awareness among the people regarding the conservation of forests and wildlife.
7. By launching projects like project tiger, project rhino etc

Some notable environmental movements in India:-

The Chipko Movement

1. The Chipko Movement:-

The Chipko Movement was initiated by Chandi Prasad Bhatt and Sundar Lal Bahuguna, in the early 1970s in Uttarakhand. Chipko Movement means " hug", so in this movement men, women and children embraced the trees and didn't allow axe men or contractors to cut them down. Conservation and protection of trees was the main objective of this movement. The movement gathered momentum all over the Himalayas and even spread to other states.

2. The joined forest Management Programme:-

This programme was initiated in Odisha in 1988. Its main aim is to involve local communities in the restoration of degraded forest and their management. In this programme, both the forest department and local people are involved. The forest department provides land and plants to grow but the conservation and protection are done by the local community. This programme has got successful in the Mayurbhanj, Sundergadh and Nayagarh districts of Odisha.

Community and Conservation:-

In India, forests are also home to some of the traditional communities. They get their livelihood from forests. In some of the areas, they are struggling to conserve forests and wildlife along with government officials. For example- in the Sariska tiger reserve, villagers have fought against mining by citing the Wildlife Protection Act.
In many areas, villagers themselves are protecting habitats explicitly rejecting government involvement. For example- the people of five villages in the Alwar district of Rajasthan have declared 1200 hectares of forests as the Bhairodev Dakav " Sonchuri". They have set their own rules and regulations to protect wildlife.
In the same manner, a number of communities are worshipping various trees and helping in the conservation of forests. For example - in the Chota Nagpur region Mahua and Kadamba trees are worshipped by Mundas and Santhals. In short, communities are also very useful in the conservation of forests and wildlife. Movements such as the Chipko, Appiko etc are an example of it.

Classification of forest on the basis of administration:-

Reserved Forest:-

Reserved Forests are regarded as the most valuable as far as the conservation of forest and wildlife resources is concerned. These forests are also referred to as permanent forests. More than half of the total forest land has been declared reserve forests, M.P., Jammu, West Bengal, and Maharashtra have large percentages of reserve forests of their total forests.

Protected Forests:-

The forests which are protected from any further depletion are called protected forests. Almost one-third of the total forest area is protected forests. Bihar, Haryana, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Odisha and Rajasthan have a bulk of forest area under protected forests. These forests are called permanent forests.

Unclassed Forests:-

These are other forests and wastelands belonging to both government and private individuals and communities. All the northeastern states and parts of Gujarat have a very high percentage of their forests managed by local communities.