State scheme funds are provided under Nature Conservation, Improvement of AAZP, Compensation, etc., Funds are also allocated for mitigation of Human Wildlife Conflicts like Construction of EPT, Solar Powered Fence, Providing drinking water facilities, tackling problem of Monkey menace etc.

Tami Nadu Biodiversity Conservation and Greening Project:

Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) aided Tamil Nadu Biodiversity Conservation and Greening Project (TBGP) with an expenditure of Rs.510.02 crore has been implemented as a eight year project, from 2011-12 to 2018-19. The project has been instrumental in reducing the threats to the native Biodiversity of the State and in enhancing the natural resource base besides improving the capacity of field staff. 7.89 crore seedlings have been planted under Tree Cultivation in Private Lands from the beginning of the project covering an area of 1.43 lakh hectare farmland benefiting 87,299 farmers.

Massive Tree Planting Programme:

Tamil Nadu Forest Department conceived the project of Massive Tree Planting Programme (MTP) with the aim to increase green cover, mitigate the adverse effects of various environmental pollutants etc. This massive tree planting programme is being implemented continuously from 2011-12 onwards. From 2011-12 to 2017-18, the Planting and maintenance of 3.99 crore seedlings in the 32 districts throughout Tamil Nadu has been achieved. During 2018-19, the scheme was continued with a target of 71 lakh seedlings. 64 lakh seedlings will be planted by Rural Development and Panchayat Raj department under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) and 7 lakh seedlings will be planted by Forest Department in degraded forest areas.

Raising Sandal Plantations:

The scheme of Raising of Sandal plantations in Reserved Forests in the traditional natural sandal bearing areas of Jawadhi Hills, Shervaroyan hills, Kolli Hills, Pachamalai hills and Chitheri hills for a period of 10 years from 2015-16 to 2024-25 with an outlay of Rs.100 crore is being implemented. The scheme has been implemented during 2018-19 at a cost of Rs.1.29 crore. The scheme is being continued during 2019-20 at an outlay of Rs.14.37 crore.

Raising Teak Plantations:

To enhance the tree cover and timber resources of the State, the scheme of Raising Teak plantations over an area of 6000 ha is being implemented from 2017-18 for 8 years at a total outlay of Rs.52.64 crore. The scheme has been implemented during 2018-19 at a cost of Rs.5.63 crore. This scheme is being continued during 2019-20 at an outlay of Rs.7.98 crore over an area of 1200 ha.

Rejuvenation of Vaigai and Noyyal Rivers

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development assisted scheme of Rejuvenation of Vaigai and Noyyal rivers has been conceived for preventing the pollutants including the heavy load of silts into the water bodies. The scheme is being implemented from 2017-18 for 3 years at a total outlay of Rs.24.58 crore. Soil and Moisture Conservation works and a small component of planting work which inter alia include the sowing of grass seeds are carried out under the scheme. The scheme is expected to improve the fodder and water availability inside the Reserved Forest area for mitigating the human-wildlife conflict in the forest fringe areas. During 2018-19, the scheme has been implemented with an outlay of Rs.6.79 crore. The scheme is being implemented during 2019-20 with an outlay of Rs.9.05 crore.

Resolving Man animal conflicts:

Mitigating the man-animal conflict is of greatest concern of Tamil Nadu Forest Department.  To ensure that the affected persons should be compensated adequately, the compensation for the damage of crops, loss of human life etc., the quantum of amount has been considerably enhanced linking cases of “human animal conflict” with the “Disaster Management” vide G.O Ms. No..141 E&F, FR.6. dated 25.11.2016.  The compensation for human death and permanent incapacitation is Rs.4.00 lakh and for major injuries, it is Rs.0.591 lakh.

Further to enhance the institutional capacity and to strategically improve its veterinary support services to the forest and wildlife areas in order  to deal with emerging wildlife health induced crisis situations and to manage the human wildlife situations, three Forest Veterinary Units at Erode, Krishnagiri and Tirunelveli have been established at a cost of Rs.3.90 crores.

Eco-restoration of Pallikaranai Marshland

The State Government is committed to protect the Pallikaranai marshland which is a unique fresh water swamp located within the Chennai Metropolitan area. Conservation Authority of Pallikaranai Marshland has been constituted to monitor all the activities. An area of 690.65 ha is under the control of Tamil Nadu Forest Department. Restoration activities like habitat improvement, protection, research, monitoring, publicity and awareness has been undertaken under the scheme. It is being implemented from 2018-2019 to 2022-2023 at a cost of Rs.165.68 crore under National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change.

Arignar Anna Zoological Park, (AAZP) Vandalur

The Arignar Anna Zoological Park is located in Vandalur near Chennai spreading over an extent of 602 Ha. Since its establishment, this zoological park has emerged as a successful ex-situ conservation complex and a captive breeding centre for many endangered wildlife species like White Tiger, Lion Tailed Macaque and Nilgiri Langur. This park exhibits 2644 animals, which include 46 species of mammals, 90 species of birds, 35 species of reptiles numbering 171 species of wildlife in all.

Arigna Anna Zoological Park has recorded visitor footfall of 20.49 lakh during 2018-19. The total revenue of Zoo is Rs.13.96 crore during 2018-19. 24x7 Animal Live Streaming of 14 animals was introduced last year for the benefit of the public through the website. More than 3 crore page views were recorded in one year. The Zoo has strengthened its protections by means of installing more than 150 Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras for both visitors & animal management which is called as Zoo e-eye.

Online ticketing system and digital payments were introduced during 2018-19 for the benefit of visitors. More than 1000 rescued animals were rehabilitated at the Zoo. The Zoo school conducts several awareness programmes such as Zoo Ambassador for school children, special themed workshops for adults, zoo outreach activities. Through these programmes more than 400 Zoo Ambassador were titled last year and about 20,000 people were given awareness talks. The Zoo has introduced several facilities like Vandalur Zoo Mobile Application, YouTube channel, Virtual reality shows, Zoo souvenir shop, Purified drinking water for the benefit of the visitors. Facilities, like modern electric incinerator, solar fencing, digital x-ray, new animal enclosure were provided for the better management of the Zoo animals.

Drought relief measures taken in Tamil Nadu forest department

Due   to prevailing acute drought water scarcity in all rivers, canals, streams in the Reserve Forest and Protected Areas. Due to this,  percolation ponds, water holes, Checkdams  were dried and fodders are not available in these areas. Because of this, the wild animals  are likely to straying into the nearby patta lands, agricultural fields and in villages for search water and food and thereby it leads to man-animal conflict in the form of crop and property damage, animal death due to hit by vehicles and human death. 

Considering the drought situation in Tamil Nadu, Special Field Inspection was conducted in   all Protected Areas and Reserved Forest Areas.  Based on this, the Conservator of Forests, Virudhunagar, Madurai, Coimbatore, Dharmapuri, Dindigul, Vellore, Tirunelveli, Trichy and Villupuram Circles have sent drought relief proposals for the following works an amount of Rs. 5.00 Crores.

  • Supply of Water through tanker lorries into the water troughs in the Forests
  • Creation of new water holes.
  • Maintenance of water holes, percolation ponds and checkdams.
  • Desilting of percolation ponds.
  • Erection of borewell with motors energized by solar power.,
  • Fire control measures due to severe drought situation.
  • Driving menaceful animals into the deep forests with the help of Anti- poaching watchers to prevent man animal conflicts.

Vardha Cylone

“Vardah” Cyclone on 12.12.2016 has caused severe damages to trees, animal enclosures, roads, buildings, boundary walls, drainages, electricity supply network, water supply network and civic amenities of Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur.  Restoration and re-construction works are being carried out in war footing to re-open Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur as early as possible.

 Supply of feed and water to all the animals has been restored immediately and the safety of animals has been strengthened.  Mobility of vehicles was also restored within few days by removing wind fallen trees in all the roads. The other restoration works were carried out on war footing by drawing a time schedule.

The Guindy National Park  /Childrens Park also were damaged severely due to cyclone vardah.  The restoration work was carried out in quickest time possible and the Children’s Park was reopened for public on 30.12.2016.  The Arignar Anna Zoological Park, was reopened for public on 10.02.2017 by making earnest and best efforts.

The cyclone Vardah made a landfall with wind speed ranging from 120-140 kms per hour in Chennai, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts.  Around 1 lakh trees have been uprooted in Chennai city.  In view of the large scale destruction caused to trees, effort is made to bring back green urban spaces and recreate tree cover in Chennai, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts which is the dire need of the hour to mitigate the climate change.  The Government have sanctioned an amount of Rs.13.42 crores for “Restoration of Green cover in Chennai city and adjoining districts to restore the tree cover lost due to “Vardah” cyclone.

Tamil Nadu Innovation Initiatives:

The following Six (6) new schemes under Tamil Nadu Innovation Initiatives fund has been approved at a total outlay of Rs.3.84 crores for implementation ranging from one year to three years. From 2016-17 onwards the scheme is being implemented.

  • Project Kaliru
  • Non-Destructive method by Ultrasonic standardized for assessment of internal decay and hollowness in standing trees / timbers
  • Restoration of Tropical Dry Evergreen forest (TDEF) in Nanmangalam Reserved Forest
  • Women Empowerment through Conservation of Medicinal Plants
  • Surveillance of Forest and wild life areas through Drone Technology
  • Maximizing the ground water recharge in Vangaram RF of Ariyalur Division

A Grievance Redresseal day

A Grievance Redresseal day is being organized in every month to redress the grievance of tribal people who are living in forest fringes.  Initially, Grievance Redressal day is being organized in Thriuvanamalai district on pilot basis. Order have been issued vide G.O.(MS).No.116, Environment and Forests (FR.10) dated.14.10.2016 and the scheme is under implementation.

The scheme of raising palmyrah palm plantation

It is in Government and community land in Tamil Nadu for a period of five years from 2016-17- 2020-21 has been sanctioned at a cost of Rs.1.38 crore and sanction accorded for  an amount of Rs.25.00 lakh towards the implementation of the scheme during 2016-17 vide G.O.(MS).No.142, Environment and Forests (FR.-6) dated.29.11.2016 and the scheme is under implementation.

Forest Genetic Resources Tree Park at Chennai

In G.O Ms No 137 dated 22-11-2016 orders have been issued to establish Forest Genetic Resources Tree Park at Chennai adjacent to Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur on the Vandalur-Kelambakkam Road at a cost of Rs.2.00 crores, to assemble 300 tree species available in Western and Eastern Ghats which will serve as a learning centre for farmers and students.  It will also act as Botanists' Paradise.

Live streaming facility in Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur

Sanction has been accorded to establish Live streaming facility in Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur during 2016-17 at a cost of Rs.50.00 lakhs vide G.O Ms. No.138, Environment and Forests dated 22.11.2016.

Online ticketing facility in Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur

Sanction has been accorded to establish Online ticketing facility in Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur at a cost of Rs.50.00 lakh.  This will facilitate the Public to purchase tickets online to visit the AAZP, by which they can avoid standing in the long queues. Orders have been issued to carry out this work vide G.O Ms. No.135, Environment and Forests dated 22.11.2016.

Tamil Nadu Forest Department’s Martyr’s day

Recognizing the sacrifices made by certain Forest officials in protecting and safeguarding the Forest wealth and wildlife, to commemorate them, it has been ordered to observe Tamil Nadu Forest Department’s Martyr’s dayevery year on 11th of September.  Orders have been issued vide G.O.(MS).No.119, Environment and Forests (FR.13) department dt.18.10.2016.

Automatic Weather stations

Sanction has been accorded to establish seven Automatic Weather stations in Seven Agro-climatic zones of Tamil Nadu at a total cost of Rs.14.00 lakhs, to study climate change and associated threats in Forest Eco-system.

Preventing monkey menace in Tamil Nadu

To curb the monkey menace, works like establishment of two monkey capturing units at Velachery and Vandalur, establishment of a Nodal Centre at Zoo Veterinary Hospital in Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur and formation of ten cluster rehabilitation centres at Ooty, Coimbatore, Salem, Erode, Vellore, Tiruchirappalli, Madurai, Tirunelveli, Ramanathapuram and Kanniyakumari districts have been undertaken.