An action plan to curb further erosion

Wetlands are extremely essential to the continued existence of India's diverse populations of wildlife and plant species; a large number of species are wetland- dependent. Considered even from a human centric approach, the continued existence of wetlands is a must for human well-being.

Natural wetlands in India consist of the high-altitude Himalayan lakes, those in the flood plains of the major river systems, saline and temporary wetlands of the arid and semi-arid regions, coastal wetlands such as lagoons, backwaters and estuaries, mangrove swamps, coral reefs and marine wetlands. With the exception of bogs, fens and typical salt marshes, Indian wetlands cover the whole range of wetland ecosystem types. In addition to the various types of natural wetlands, a large number of man-made wetlands contribute to sustaining the aquatic faunal and floral diversity. Perhaps no other ecological system is more threatened than the wetland ecosystems.

Full article can be read in The Hindu's Survey of the Environment 2010. The publication is now on stands. Copies can be obtained by Registered Post (not V.P.P.) for Rs.80 (Rupees Eighty) by drawing a cheque in favour of "Kasturi and Sons Ltd." (Add Rs.10 for non-Chennai cheques) and sending it to the Circulation Department, The Hindu, 859-860, Anna Salai, Chennai 600002 Email: subs@thehindu.co.in

Dr. S. Narendra Prasad is with Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History, Deccan Regional Station, Hyderabad.