TNFOREST :: Tamil Nadu Forest Department

Sacred-Groves-Of-TN

Tamil Nadu Forest Department with the assistance of the C.P.R. Environmental Education Centre, Chennai have carried out survey of Sacred Groves in Tamil Nadu during 2011.  The survey listed about 1262 Sacred Groves in Tamil Nadu.  Many of the Sacred Groves are reservoirs of rare fauna and flora especially those located within Protected and Notified areas.  They are protected under Tamil Nadu Forest Act 1882 and Wildlife Protection Act 1972.  Forest Department had identified various threats to Sacred Groves in Tamil Nadu.  Human activities such as dead wood collection, biomass gathering, lopping of tender branches and green leaves for goats, creation of footpaths, cattle grazing, mining of sand and clay for brick-making and collection of wild fruits and vegetables and also collection of plant parts for medicinal uses are affecting the ecology of the Sacred Groves.  In addition, invasion of exotic weeds has become a serious problem in the ecology of some Sacred Groves.  The domination of alien species such as Eupatorium odoratum, Lantana camara, Prosopis juliflora and Hyptis suaveolens often threatens and depletes the local species.  Conflicts among the Sacred Grove managers have also resulted in the loss of biodiversity in certain Sacred Groves.