Diversity Assessment of Woody Plants of Megamalai Wildlife Sanctuary, Theni District, Tamilnadu


Author(s): S. Karuppusamy and V. Ravichandran

The present study was carried out for documentation of woody plants of Megamalai Wildlife Sanctuary in the southern Western Ghats of Theni district, Tamil Nadu. A total of 486 woody plant species, of which 283 trees, 191 shrubs and 12 lianas, belongs to 237 genera and 76 families respectively were recorded duirng the September 2012 to December 2015. The most dominant families are Rubiaceae (48 species), Fabaceae (33 species), Lauraceae (27 species) and they have contributed higher number of species followed by Euphorbiaceae, Moraceae and Malvaceae (21 species each). At the generic level Ficus (16 species) and Litsea (14 species) are dominated and followed by Syzygium, Diospyros, Grewia (10 each). Out of 486 woody taxa, 8 species are confined only to this Wildlife Sanctuary; Nothopegia vajravelui, Sonerila parameswaranii, Ardisia blatteri, schefflera maduraiensis, Ixora monticola, Anisochilus henryi, Elaeocarpus gaussenii, and Drypetes porteri. Among 486 woody plant species, about 41 species are in the IUCN threat status. Elaeocarpus gaussenii, Ixora johnsonii and Syzygium travancoricum are in Critically Endangered category (CR), 15 species of this list are under Endangered category (EN) and 12 spcies in Vulnarable category (VU). The study impressed that this area is more relevent to the conservation of local flora.

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