Describe the ecological and economic significance of forests

Ecological significance:-

1. Forests constitute one of the most important basic natural resources of the country.

2. From ecological view, forests form distinct eco systems.

3. As a resource, forests help in the occurrence of rainfall, pomote soil conservation in the catchment areas.

4. They regulate run of water, improve moisture holding capacity of the soils and maintain ecological balance.

5. The vegetation in the highly industrialized regions reduces the intensity of atmospheric pollution.

Economic significance:-

1. From the point of economy, forests can be viewed as a national wealth because forests produce handsome revenue in the form of timber and fuel.

2. Forest lands can be utilized as grazing grounds for livestocks.

3. With the increase of population, there has been an enormous increase in the use of timber in different sectors of socio-economic life like housing, agriculture, industry, transport etc.

4. Apart from timber and firewood, there are so many products like charcoal wood, pulp and matchwood, canes, rose wood, sandal wood, lac, rubber, resins, honey, herbs fruits, dyes, tans, kendu leaves etc are obtained from forests.

5. They have become basement for many industries like paper, match, plywood, dye making etc.

6. There are so many plant species of medicinal value.

7. Hence, now-a-days, both conservation and development of forest resource is as important as agriculture and industry.

Name the important forest based industries

Important forest-based industries:-

1. Paper, pulp,Matchboxes,fuel,dyemaking, medicinal and furniture are some of the forest based industries.

2. Timber wood industry is the major form of industry useful in housing, agriculture, industry and transport etc.

3. What are the factors that influence the character and type of forests? Explain with examples?

1. On the basis of Physiographic conditions there are six major forest types identified in India.

2. Terrain,climate, soil and water conditions greatly influence the character and type of vegetation.

3. The Himalayan region, which is rich in vegetative life, possesses a variety of vegetation.

4. The Alpine type of vegetation at higher altitudes is clearly distinguished form the rest of the country.

5. Climatic factors mainly temperature and rainfall determine which plant community can flourish in a specific habitat.

Briefly explain the major forest types and their distribution in India

1. Tropical wet evergreen and semi-ever green forests:-

1. These forest grow in places of Hilly terrains with altitudes ranging from 500 mts to 1500 mts and rainfall exceeding 200 cms.

2. These forest grow in places like southern western ghats, north-eastern India, Andaman-Nicobar Islands and plains of West Bengal and Orissa.

2. Tropical moist deciduous forests:-

1. Both hilly terrains and plateau surfaces, with rainfall between 100 and 200 cms.

2. Western Ghats, Orissa, Eastern Madhya Pradesh, Chota Nagpur Plateau and Siwaliks of Himalayas.

3. Tropical dry deciduous forests:-

1. Cover vast areas of plateau and plain areas with rainfall between 70 and 100 cms.

2. Occupied the large part of Peninsular Plateau and Ganga Plain particularly this forest occupy the large area between the Thar, the Himalayas and the Western ghats.

4. Thorn forests:-

1. These forests grow in places of dry areas with rainfall less than 70 cms

2. These forest grow in places like the plains of the Punjab, Rajasthan and Western Uttar Pradesh and parts of Gujarat, seaside of Western Ghats and the drier parts of the Deccan Plateau.

5. Tidal Forests:-

1. These forests grow in places of the brackish as well as fresh water areas of the tide washed coasts where mud and silt accumulated.

2. These forests grow in places like the seaward fringes, channels and island of the Indian deltas like Ganga, Mahanadi, Godavari and Krishna.

6. The Himalayan temperate and Alpine forests:-

1. These forests grow in places of Moist temperate forests cover the entire Himalayan range in the 100-250 cms rainfall zone at an elevation of 1600-3000 mts and the Alpine forests at a higher elevation of 3500 mts .and above.

2. These forests grow in places like all the ranges of middle and upper Himalayas.

5. Describe the important characteristics of tropical moist evergreen forests and mention their spacial distribution?

Tropical Moist evergreen and semi-ever green forests:-

1. These forests grow in places of hilly terrains with altitudes ranging from 500 to
1500 mts and rainfall exceeding 200cms

Southern western ghats (Kerala and Karnataka) north-eastern India (Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, Manipur, Nagaland) Andaman-Nicobar island s and plain of West Bengal and Orissa.


1. Vegetation is very dense. Height of the trees often reaches to 45 mts and also upto 60 mts.

2. Variety of species is very large consists of rose wood, paan, aini, telsur (Sahyadris); Champa, toon, gurjan, ironwood, ebony, simar laurel wood (Shillong plateau and West Bengal)

State the valuable forest products of deciduous forests

1. Deciduous forests of India produce Timber, firewood and bamboo.

2. Also teak, sandal wood, Rose wood, Ebony, Mahua, Khair are the products available in these forest.

3. They are useful in Timber, Paper, Furniture and Soap industry.

4. Economically, these are most important forests in India.

Explain the Spatial distribution of forest land in India

Distribution of Forest Land:-

1. According to 2000-01 Statistics, the forest land occupied about 675538sq kms hectares which accounted for 20.7% of the total geographical area of the country.

2. The largest area of forest land (77,265 sq kms) is found in Madhya Pradesh while the lowest (1745sq km hectares) in Haryana.

3. The important states for significant coverage of forests are Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Maharashtra, Arunachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh

4. In terms of relative proportion, the highest concentration of forest land is registered in Arunachal Pradesh state with 62.1 percent of its geographical area while the lowest concentration is in Haryana with 3.8 percent.

5. On the whole, the north-eastern India consists of Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Tripura, Nagaland, Meghalaya is found with very high density of forest cover. In contrast, the north-western includes Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Jammu an Kashmir with very low concentration.

6. There are 13 states namely, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Tripura, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Kerala, Manipur, Assam and Andhra Pradesh have the concentration of forest land more than the India’s coverage (20.7%).

7. The rest of the states in the country registered much below the country’s average.

8. The Andaman and Nicobar islands are also found with high concentration of forest cover.

Examine the need for forest development in India

The need for forest development in India:-

1. Both from the point of ecology and economy, forests are considered to be an important part of our national wealth.

2. Chaotic growth of population and the greed of the present man’s shot-sighted and unplanned commercial and subsistence gathering activities like indiscriminate lumbering, charcoal burning, firewood collection, overgrazing and jhumming type of cultivation and annual forest fires have been causing considerable damage to forest wealth system in our country.

3. As a result, the more valuable deciduous monsoon forests in India have been degenerated and degraded into thorny bushes, open scrub lands, dry meadows.

4. Many of man’s activities through fetching short term gains, are causing long-term and sometimes irreversible damages to the quality of our environment.

5. According to National forest policy of India 1952, the forest land must be 20% in plains and 60% in mountains and hilly regions with an overall average of about 33% of the geographical area to maintain a proper ecological balance.

6. So, in our plan programmes, first priority should be given to develop both quality and quantity of forest cover in order to protect our environment as well as to improve our forest-based economy.


What are the tidal forests called and what is their economic significance

1. The tidal forests are called “Mangroove forests” and “Sundarbans”

2. These forests grow in the brackish as well as fresh water areas of the tide washed coasts where mud and silt accumulated.

3. These are useful in boat building and newsprint industries.
What is the economic significance of Alpine forests of Himalayas

1. Alpine type of vegetation found on the higher altitudes of the Himalayas in their middle and upper ranges.

2. These forests consists of softwood, Timber, dry fruits, silver firz, chir, pine etc.

3. Wood pulp, Matches, timber and handicrafts, resin, turpentine and railway sleepers etc are the important forest products.

Mention the location of tidal forests

Tidal forests are found in the seaward fringes, channels and islands of the Indian deltas like Ganga, Mahanadi, Godavari and Krishna.

Why do the forests are considered as national wealth from the point of economy

Forests are considered as national wealth because they produce timber and fuel and get a handsome revenue.

From the point of view of physiographic conditions, What is the difference between tropical moist deciduous forests an tropical dry deciduous forests

1. Tropical moist deciduous forests are found on both hilly terrains and plateu
surfaces with rainfall between 100 and 200 Cms.
2. Tropical dry deciduous forests cover vast areas of plateau and plain areas with rainfall between 70 and 100 Cms.

III. Fill in the blanks:-

1. Madhya Pradesh state is having the largest area under forest.

2. Sandal wood is produced mainly in Tropical moist deciduous forests.

3. The tidal forests are also known as Mangroove forests.

4. Sundarbans are named after the Sundari tree.

5. Teak is abundantly grown in Tropical moist deciduous forests.

6. Alpine vegetation is found in all the ranges of middle and upper Himalayas.

7. 33 percentage of land is required to maintain ecological balance.

8. Karnataka state is famous for growing sandal wood.

9. The area under forest coverage in India at present is 20.7%.

10. Alpine forest produces the railway sleepers.

11. Thorne forest are mostly found in western ghats plains of Punjab and Rajasthan, Gujarat.

12. Tidal forest have economic value in boats building and news print.

13. Tidal forest grow in brackish and fresh water.

14. Wild date palms is common in the depressions of thorn forests.

15. Alpine vegetation grows at elevation of 3500 mts and above.

16. Kendu leaves are useful for beedi making.

17. The prosperity of a country depends on its forest wealth.

18. Mangroove is the important tree of tidal forest.

19. The national forest policy of India was announced in the year 1952.

20. The forests that are useful for making wood pulp and handicrafts are Alpine forests.

21. Sundarbans are found in the State of West Bengal.

22. Tropical Moist deciduous forests yield important varieties like teak.

23. Coniferous forests yield trees of soft wood like fir and deodar.

24. The lowest area of forest land is found in Haryana state.

25. Tropical dry deciduous forests are located in Orissa.

26. Example for forests based Industry Match Industry.

Match the following:-


1. Pine                                       [c] a. Karnataka

2. Tidal Forest                           [e] b. Siwaliks

3. North-Western India            [d] c. Himalayas

4. Sal                                         [b] d. Thorn forests

5. Sandal wood                         [a] e. Sundarbans

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