Context: After several years of efforts to gather seeds from all over the city and other states, a “seed bank,” which gathers and stores seeds of species of plants that are native to the Aravallis, is gradually taking shape at a nursery at the Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary.
More about news:
- It began in 2015 to provide saplings that are native to the city and bring back species that are now difficult to find in the city.
- The project being implemented jointly by the Forest Department and the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS).
- For this project, seeds have been drawn from parts of Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Haryana, and Bihar.
- Species that are specific to the Aravallis are identified by studying model sites that have intact forests with very little disturbance, like Mangar Bani in Faridabad. Efforts are then made to replicate these old-growth forests.
- Among the additions to the seed bank are seeds of trees like salai and phalsa- species that are difficult to find in Delhi. These seeds were brought from Rajasthan and Haryana.
About Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary
- It covers area on the Southern Delhi Ridge of Aravalli hill range on Delhi-Haryana border lies in Southern Delhi as well as northern parts of Faridabad and Gurugram districts of Haryana state.
- It is the part of the Northern Aravalli leopard wildlife corridor, an important wildlife corridor which starts from the Sariska National Park in Rajasthan, passes through Faridabad and Gurugram districts of Haryana and ends at Delhi Ridge.
- This is an important habitat for the Indian leopard, blackbuck striped hyena, jungle cat, golden jackal, Indian hare, Indian boar, black buck, sambar deer, spotted deer and hog deer among others. Endangered species in the sanctuary include red-headed vulture and egyptian vulture. Near-threatened species include painted stork, white-faced ibis and european roller.
Indian Seed Vault
- It is a secure seed bank located in a high-altitude mountain pass on the Chang La in Ladakh, India.
- It was built in 2010 jointly by the Defence Institute of High-Altitude Research and the National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources.
- It is the second largest seed bank in the world.