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The Sundarban Region in India is located between 21°32' and 22°40'N latitude and 88°30'N and 89°00' longitude. It is bounded by the river Hooghly on the west, Ichamati-Kalindi-Raimangal on the east, Dampier-Hodges line on the north and the bay of Bengal on the south. The total area of Indian Sundarban region is about 9630 sq. km., out of which the Reserve Forest occupies nearly 4260 sq. km. At present, out of 108 islands of the Sundarban region, 54 are inhabited with a population of about 3.2 million (1991 census), spread over 1093 mouzas.


Constitution of Sundarban Biosphere Reserve:

 

As part of the Man and Biosphere Programme (MAB), accepted in the general conference of the UNESCO in 1970, the Ministry of Environment of Forests, Govt. of India adopted the National MAB programme and declared the entire 9630 sq. km. of Sundarban as the Sundarban Biosphere Reserve in 1989. Sundarban Biosphere Reserve has also been included in the World Network of Biospheres by UNESCO in November, 2001.The extent of mangrove Reserved Forest in Indian Sundarban is around 4260 sq. km., which is administratively divided into Sunderban Tiger Reserve (area = 2600 sq. km.) and 24 Pgs. (S) Forest Divn. (area = 1660 sq. km.). Out of this total recorded forest area, 55% is under vegetation cover and balance 45% is under water body/ char land.


Park/ Sanctuary Area:
  • Sunderban National Park 1330 sq. km.
  • Saznekhali Wildlife Sanctuary 362 sq. km.
  • Lothian Wildlife Sanctuary 38 sq. km.
  • Haliday Wildlife Sanctuary 6 sq. km.
The Importance of Sunderban Forest:

 

  • Sunderbans of Bangladesh and India is the single largest mangrove forest of the world.
  • The only mangrove forest of the world having largest floral and faunal diversity.
  • The only mangrove forest having a Tiger population.
  • Home of several endangered, threatened and endemic floral and faunal species.
  • Sunderban mangrove acts as a fish nursery and supports coastal fisheries along Bay of Bengal and Indian Ocean.
  • Sunderban forest acts as a sink for the mega-metropoliton pollutants.
  • The mangrove forest provides protection to inland habitations against the fury of cyclones.
Floral and Faunal Diversity of Sunderban Mangroves:

Floral Diversity

 

True Mangrove species

26

 

Mangrove associates

29

 

Back mangrove species

29

 

Family

40

 

Genera

60

 

Species  

84

The Fauna

  

Total no. of species

1586

 

Vertebrate Spp  

481

 

Hemichordate Spp

1

 

Invertebrate Spp

1104

 

Protozoan species

106

Included in Sch. I & II of WLP Act

 

Mammals 15

 

Birds 8

 

Reptiles 17

 

Total species included in Sch. I of WLP Act 24

 

Total species included in Appendix I
of CITES Regulation
14
Population of Royal Bengal Tiger:
   
Year
  Forest Area
1993
1997
1999
  Sunderban R.F.
251
263
284
 

 

 

 

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