Saving the ecology has always been a priority for the human race but somehow somewhere in man’s fast paced industrialized life, it seems to have forgotten about its diligent duties towards nurturing the environment. Forest cover, day by day has been deteriorating courtesy the ever growing industry sector and lack of respect towards mother nature. Nature’s beauty is steadily being replaced by concrete jungles. This menace is not only restricted towards our nation but this problems has spread its vicious tentacles across the world. Presenting a list of the top 10 endangered forests n the world. The saying goes better late than never. I hope it’s not too late even for this phrase to be uttered.
10. Eastern Afromontane
This endangered forest runs all across Saudi Arabia towards Zimbabwe in the African continent.The state of this forest is extremely dilapidated as far ecological balance is considered. There are various mountains comprising this hotspot who have similar variety of flora and fauna. Perhaps this area harbors the most endemic mammals, birds and aquatic creatures. There are also beautiful lakes formed naturally because of geological impacts. The main threat to this diverse ecosystem is the rapid expansion of agriculture activities posing a threat to animal habitat.There were about 600 distinct species which are getting extinct over the years because of man made manipulations. There is hardly 10% habitat left now. Agriculture based activities have proven to be the main cause for this ecosystem destruction.
9. Madagascar and the Indian Ocean Islands
The above visual is a testification to the assertion that the Madagascar Forest cover has reached an almost irreversible stage of recovery. Logging wreaks on the forests have devastated the forest beyond recovery. A lot of manipulations were made to isolate species from natural habitats. They were cut off from the mainland. There became problems of adapting to the newer surroundings. Even animals suffered because of this man made fiasco. Even mining is carried out extensively posing as a calamity for land. Logging coupled with it incurs for more destruction. Currently hardly 10% habitat is left and people often find problems to access fresh water. The existing flora and fauna have serious survival issues.
8. Coastal Forests of East Africa
African countries particularly the coastal ones have a fantastic amount of diverse flora and fauna. African forests are very fragmented and scattered but yet account for considerable biodiversity and well balanced natural ecosystems. It is a big business markets for plant products. The African Violet itself has about a statistical business of about a 100 million dollars. This is just one example of a rare Tanzanian and a Kenyan plant. African coasts are also endemic as far as monkeys and some species of bushbabies are considered. There are many rivers flowing through these regions which are under constant attack harming the aquatic biodiversity it nurtures. Agriculture is mainly responsible for the degrading quality of the coastal ecosystem. Mining activities have further added fuel to the fire by supplementing the destruction. Farming has become very popular in this belt due to which it is consuming more and more of the region’s natural habitat.
7. California Floristic Province
California, located in of the most developed countries of the world makes its way into an ignominious list. It is quite difficult to imagine that such a forest reserve will even exist in this list. But reality is rather much harsher. Courtesy industrialization, a lot of endemic species have already become extinct. The California Florisrtic Province is home to rare fauna like the sequoia and the coastal redwood. It also houses the last of the wild condors, a critically endangered species. The Grizzly Bear, being the national animal of this region has gone extinct. This is the most shameful outcome of this region being under threat. Currently, hardly 10-15% of the forest is in a non-critical state.
6. Mountains of Southwest China
China is one of the continuously developing countries as far as technology, economy and industries are concerned. All this is coming at the cost of destruction of the ecosystem. The mountains in the southwest region of China are homes to the Giant Panda also to the very very rare Red Panda. Construction of dams has resulted in relocating many natural habitats. This has taken a toll on the flora and fauna harboring in this natural ecosystem. Agriculture activities, residential complexes and road building have further created problems for preserving the collapsing ecology. And this is not the end. The Chinese government has plans to build dams on all the main rivers and this will further harm the ecosystem. Thanks to all the man made chaos, hardly 10% of the original forest area is left.
5. Atlantic Forest
The Atlantic Forest runs runs all the way down Brazil’s Atlantic coast to areas of Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay. With an amazing count of rare species amounting to around 20,000 plant species and over 25 endangered plant species, this region is one of the world’s richest biodiversity habitats. Agriculture, mainly tea, sugar and coffee plantations have been degrading forest quality. Many manufacturing business rely on water bodies which has seriously disturbed aquatic life. Endangered rare bird species include the Red-billed Curassow, the Brazilian Merganser, and numerous threatened parrot species. Earlier there were only sugarcane plantations and later coffee and sugar plantations further ruined the habitats. Urbanization has further enhanced deterioration.
4. The Philippine Forests
The Philippines comprises about 7000 small island that make up one large hotspot. Figures show hardly 7-8% forest cover prevails. Even that 7% is scattered and heavily fragmented all across those 7000 islands. The main problem with the Philippine forests is the extensive deforestation. The aquatic reserves also suffer from excessive degrading. The scenario is so severe that whatever vegetation is left is very scanty for proper ecological balance. Urbanization has caused natural landscapes and habitats to deteriorate at a very exponential rate. Neary 95% forests are chopped off to occupy ever booming industries. Also rainforests are cleared for oil and timber. Biofuel extraction has considerably reduced vegetative cover. Nature is literally ravaged to suffice man’s greed.
Sundaland forest in Indonesia is popular for its spectacular flora and fauna. However due to man made deforestation, the number has considerably reduced. International animal trade for turtle species, animal skin and medicines has put wildlife at a very high magnitude of threat. Like many other resions, for ever growing commercial demands, tress are chopped off for rubber, oils and pulp. Orangutans are at a deadly risk in this region. Hardly 7% vegetation remaining make this a very sensitive forest area and if serious measures are not taken to conserve this forest, it will soon become history.
2. New Caledonia
Australia is beautiful in its own way having a vast landscape engulfed in forests. New Caledonia is a small forest patch in the South Pacific area. This area also suffers from the cliched problems of deforestation and agriculture has caused deterioration of natural habitats. Mining has further added to the ecological chaos resulting in only 5% of forest cover.
The Indo-Burma is home to a large aquatic ecosystem which includes lot of fishes and rare tortoises. Dams constructed in these water bodies has caused problems of land degradation and has flooded sandbars. Wetlands are constantly misused and utilized disproportionately for rice cultivation which has caused serious deterioration of our ecology. As per recent statistics, only 5% original forest area remains. Olivier Langrand comments that forests are extensively destroyed at a rate never witnessed before for pastures, agricultural land. Also mining is practised which is contributing to the annihilation. Construction of residential complexes is further adding to the concrete menace.The killer combination of population explosion and the growing economic sector has caused exploitation of natural resources. The current status of this endangered forest resource is said to be very critical. Wildlife trade, mainly concerning food, skin and medicines is an enormous problem for biodiversity conservation. The problem of logging has gripped this area too and sadly very few species retain their ecosystem.