[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A key component that guarantees stability of coastal sand dunes (CSDs) is vegetation. In this study, the floristic composition and distribution from CSDs of India is reviewed. Analysis revealed a total 338 species of CSD flora, of which 92 species are found to be common to the west and east coasts. The west coast showed a greater diversity than the east coast, accounting for 267 and 163 species respectively. Fabaceae members dominated the flora and 62% of dune species exhibited an herbaceous habit. The nonmetric multi-dimensional scaling (nMDS) resulted in three groups at 20% similarity. The CSD vegetation appeared to be more influenced by the geological setting and climatology of the region. The higher number of coastal dune species along the west coast is attributed to larger and extensive sandy areas. The CSD flora of India is under constant anthropogenic pressure due to rapid elimination of sand dunes and its associated vegetation. The prevailing Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification does not guarantee the health of sand dune flora. A coastal vegetation conservation policy that ensures a succession of species in the form of a three layered biozone is proposed as a long term sustainable option to maintain biodiversity of coastal flora
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The major seagrass meadows in India exist along the southeast coast (Gulf of Mannar and Palk Bay) and in the lagoons of islands from Lakshadweep in the Arabian Sea to Andaman and Nicobar in the Bay of Bengal. The flora comprises of 14 species and is dominated by Cymodocea rotundata, C. serrulata, Thalassia hemprichii, Halodule uninervis, H. pinifolia, Halophila beccarii, H. ovata and H. ovalis. Distribution occurs from the intertidal zone to a maximum depth of Ca 15 m. Maximum growth and biomass occur in the lower littoral zone to a depth of 2-2.5 m. This chapter describes quantitative distribution in Indian waters occurrences along the coastal states of India and policy responses
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ruppia bed measuring approx. 0.015 km sup(2) was observed from the shallow waters in the saltpan. The salinity and temperature of the overlying waters of the bed was 22.7 PSU and 30 degrees C, respectively. Vegetative features, ecological and environmental characteristics, confirmed close resemblance of the genus with Ruppia rostellata Koch. However, pollen morphology is suggestive of an ecological adaptation or a new variety of R. rostellata. Vegetation remains for the short period (June-October) during monsoon. Annual occurrence of R. rostellata bed from the region could be attributed to the reduced salinity and temperature with the onset of monsoon. Epiphytic flora was mostly dominated by species of Lyngbya and Navicula
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Seagrasses, a specialized group of flowering plants, submerged in the marine, estuarine, bay and backwater regions of the world. Though seagrass beds are of great ecological and socio economic importance, they are mostly unknown to Indians. Seagrass beds from India are mainly confined to southeast coast, Lakshadweep and Andaman and Nicobar group of Islands. West coast of India is represented by four species, and patches are confined to estuarine and bay regions. Halophila beccarii and H. ovalis constitute the seagrass flora of Goa, and their patches occur in the lower intertidal and shallow littoral, polyhaline (18-30 ppt) zones. The prominent beds in Goa exist along Mandovi and Terekhol estuaries, and Chapora Bay. These habitats in the country have been categorized as ecologically sensitive habitats under Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ).
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: None of the coastal areas under study possess the rich sand dune flora characteristic of an undisturbed beach. The status of dune vegetation in tourism villages has been deteriorating as compared to that in the developing or non-tourist villages. Interactions with elders from the coastal area also reveal that a number of fruit-bearing trees, which were present 20 years ago, have now disappeared. Some isolated specimens are spotted in private compounds. Whereas tourists are attracted to Goa, India mainly due to its natural beauty, efforts to homogenize and produce 'similarity' in tourism destinations destroy the diversity of natural vegetation, with adverse long-term consequences for the industry and the region