Destruction of Grasslands, Pune

by Vishwatej Pawar
Vishwatej Pawar

Chosen as 'Picture of the Week'

According to a report released by the Planning Commission, Government of India, grasslands and deserts are among the most neglected and yet important ecosystems supporting rich biodiversity in India.

This is a scene from a hill in Baner, Pune city, Maharashtra. The photo shows a globally threatened bird, the migrant Eurasian Roller (Coracias garrulus) taking off in front of some heavy earthmoving equipment that are destroying its grassland habitat.

Like in the rest of India, grasslands all over Pune district that are not under the control of the forest department are fast disappearing. These grasslands host some threatened fauna. Unfortunately, development will take over and there won’t be habitat left for them anymore.

This is the sad state of grasslands in India, which are invariably treated as wastelands. Wooded areas are always given priority over grasslands for conservation. In many areas, including in Maharashtra’s bustard sanctuaries, trees have been planted on grasslands, destroying the beautiful flora and fauna that existed there.

According to a report released by the Planning Commission, Government of India, grasslands and deserts are among the most neglected and yet important ecosystems supporting rich biodiversity in India. This neglect is obvious in grasslands across India like this one in Pune. Like much of the country’s grasslands (and forests), this area faces severe pressures from human activities, such as unregulated vehicular movement, sand mining, hunting and tree plantations.

About the author

Vishwatej Pawar
Vishwatej is a birdwatcher from Pune interested in wildlife photography & wildlife conservation.


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