fauna

Flora

The entire area of the Melghat Tiger Reserve is under the cover of forest. Natural grassy openings are almost nonexistent. Tectona grandis (teak) is the most dominant species. The associates of Tectona grandis differ depending upon lattitude, gradient and other physiographic feature of the habitat. However its most common associates in almost all localities are Lagerstroemia parviflora, Lannea coromandelica, Emblica officinalis, Terminalia tomentosa, Anogeissus latifolia, and Ougenia oojeinensis. At lower elevations other associates of teak are Boswelia serrata, Wrightia tinctoria, Cassia fistula, Miliusa tomentosa, Bauhinia raemosa, Butea monosperma etc. And in higher elevation and in more moist localities other associates are mainly Mitragyna parviflora, Adina cardifolia, Schleichera oleosa, Albizzia procera etc.

Pioneering work of identifying and describing varied floristic of the Central Provinces and Berar was done by Witt (1916) and thereafter by R.I.Patel(1968). The first exhaustive work was published vide Technical Bulletin No 1, a document named “ Flora of Melghat Tiger Reserve” authored by Dr. M.A. Dhore and P.A. Joshi (1988) which described 647 naturalized species belonging to 398 genera of 97 families. further addition in this bio divers list was done vide Technical bulletin No. VII named as “ Additions to the Flora of Melghat” which was authored by Dr. Prabha Y. Bhogaonkar and V.D. Devarkar (1999). Their work continued for one and half year has resulted in addition of 67 species to the earlier reports of Angiosperms. Further Miss Aparna Watwe , a scientist from the Botanical Survey of India Western Region Pune did study on the flora of Melghat and added 58 species now the total species are 772, the details are given below.

Sr.No Particulars Trees Shrubs Herbs Grasses Climbers Total Spp.
1 Flora of Melghat By Dr.M.A. Dhore 90 99 343 84 31 647
2 Additions to the Flora of Melghat, By Mrs.Prabha Bhogaonkar 0 4 58 0 5 67
3 Additioins to the Flora of Melghat by Miss Aparna Watwe 1 6 49 0 2 58
Total

91

109

450

84

38

772


In the study done by Mr. Mudliar (1991), he reported some temperate species which are represented only East and North East India and Himalayas they are Geranium mascatense Bioss, Senecio Chrysanthemoides DC, Peristylus constrictus(Linde), Apium gravealens linn. Another work on flora of Melghat was done by Shri Ghurde and Wakode(1981), they studied on Mushroom flora of Melghat reported species like Morchella Conioa.pers. This gives an indication about the likely presence of high altitude or temperate species of Melghat.

Out of the 67 species reported by Dr. Prabha Bhogankar two are of interest from conservation point of view. Achyranthes coynei Sant. was know from only lone locality ie. Khandala District Pune. A small population of 8-10 plants on Makhala Plateau near forest rest house was found. Another specie Ceropegia oculata Hook. is endemic to Maharashtra, so for known to occur in Pune, Ratnagiri and Raigad District. The species was collected from Bhootkhora of Makhala. It is an endangered species and BSI has suggested in situ conservation of the species, as efforts to grow the plants in experimental gardens has failed. Besides above two species, presence of Ariopsis peltata, Drosera indica an insectivorous plant, many species of Hebenaria and Senecio, medicinally important Curculigo orchilides, a rare species Smithia bigemia etc make Makhala plateau and valleys around it e.g Bhoot khora, important from vegetation point of view.

Official Website of Melghat Tiger Project, Amravati