ECOLOGICAL STATUS AND IMPACT OF DISTURBANCE IN AN ALPINE PASTURE OF GARHWAL HIMALAYA, INDIA

MANOJ DHAULAKHANDI, GOVIND S. RAJWAR, MUNESH KUMAR
2010 Journal of Plant Development  
The alpine area in Garhwal Himalaya is highly fragile and is known for its beautiful flora and fauna. The study area was located just below the Gangotri glacier which is the origin of Bhagirathi, a holy river of India. Pilgrimage, tourism, adventure activities and mules are the factors responsible for causing disturbance in this area. There is a remarkable variation in the values of diversity, species richness, dominance, density IVI and biomass production at Bhojbasa Protected (BP) and
more » ... ed (BP) and Bhojbasa Disturbed (BD) sites. The value of liveshoot biomass was highest in August (444 g m-2 on BP and 80 g m-2 on BD sites). Belowground biomass was also recorded highest for BP site and lowest for BD site. The ANP value at BP site was 363 g m-2 y-1 and 26 g m-2 y-1 at BD site.This area has shown decrease in diversity and productivity, and heavy soil erosion that indicate the consequence of increasing human activities due to pilgrimage, tourism and camping and frequent movement of mules carrying goods. Therefore, this area requires strict measures for biodiversity conservation and disaster mitigation.
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