TN State Profile

FOREST COVER (AS PER ISFR 2021 Assessment)

Forest Cover of the State is 26,419 which is 20.31% of the State’s geographical area. In terms of forest canopy density classes, the State has 3,593 (2.76 % of GA) very dense forest,  11,034 (8.48% of GA)moderately dense forest and open forest and 11,792 (9.07% of GA) respectively. There is an increase of 55.21 in the forest cover of the state as compared to 2021 assessment.



The mangrove cover in the State is 44.94 sq km, which is 0.035 percent of the State total geographical area. The Very Dense mangrove comprises 1.11 sq km of the mangrove cover, Moderately Dense mangrove is 26.95 sq km while open mangroves constitute an area of 16.88 sq km. 


Districts Very Dense Mangrove Moderately Dense Mangrove Open Mangrove Total
  Area in
Cuddalore 0.00 7.05 0.68 7.73
Nagapattinam 0.00 1.10 1.87 2.97
Pudukkottai 0.67 0.46 0.80 1.93
Ramanathapuram 0.44 0.71 1.37 2.52
Thanjavur 0.00 8.96 3.34 12.30
Tiruvallur 0.00 0.00 0.93 0.93
Tiruvarur 0.00 7.82 4.94 12.76
Thoothukudi 0.00 0.85 2.95 3.80
Total 1.11 26.95 16.88 44.94



Area in
Altitude Zone      VDF      MDF        OF        Total
0-500 364 5,112 8,631 14,107
500-1000 1,810 4,402 2,420 8,632
1000-2000 1,087 1,399 700 3,186
2000-3000 332 121 41 494
Total 3,593 11,034 11,792 26,419
     VDF - Very Dense Forest; MDF – Moderate Dense Forest; OF – Open Forest


Forest cover plays crucial role in the maintenance of mountain ecology and economy with particular reference to soil, water and environmental conservation. 



Traditionally, tribes have been an inseparable part of forest ecosystem. Forests are fulfilling the social, economic, cultural, religious and medical needs of the tribes. Therefore, it becomes very important to monitor and analyze the forest cover situation in the tribal areas.  


Forest cover outside the Recorded Forest Areas (in sq. km.) Tree cover (in sq. km.) Extent of TOF (in sq. km.)
8,888 4,424 13,312


  • Forest Cover: All lands, more than one hectare in area, with a tree canopy density of more than 10 percent irrespective of ownership and legal status. Such lands may not necessarily be a recorded forest area. It also includes orchards, bamboo and palm.
  • Forest Area: The area recorded as a forest in the Government records. It is also referred to as “recorded forest area”.
  • Hill District: A district with more than 50 percent of its geographic area under “hill talukas” based on criteria adopted by the Planning Commission for Hill Area and Western Ghats Development Programmes.
  • Mangroves: Salt tolerant evergreen forest ecosystem found mainly in tropical and sub-tropical coastal and/or inter-tidal regions.
  • Mangrove Cover: Area covered under mangrove vegetation as interpreted from remote sensing data. It is included in the forest cover.
  • Moderately Dense Forest: All lands with forest cover having a canopy density between 40 to 70 percent.
  • Open Forest: Lands with forest cover having a canopy density between 10 to 40 percent.
  • Protected Forest(PF): An area notified under the provisions of the Indian Forest Act or other State Forest Acts, having limited degree of protection. In protected forest all activities are permitted unless prohibited.
  • Reserved Forest (RF):An area so constituted under the provisions of the Indian Forest Act or other State Forest Acts, having full degree of protection. In Reserved forests all activities are prohibited unless permitted.
  • Scrub: Degraded forest lands having canopy density less than 10 percent.
  • Tree Cover: It comprises of tree patches outside the recorded forest area exclusive of forest cover and less than the minimum mappable area (1 ha) and up to 0.1 ha. Such small patches comprising of block, linear and scattered trees are not delineated as forest cover during interpretation of satellite data. The areas of scattered trees are computed by notional numbers.
  • Trees Outside Forests (TOF):Trees growing outside recorded forest areas.
  • Tribal Districts: Districts identified as tribal districts under Tribal Sub-Plan (Government of India).
  • Very Dense Forests: Lands with forest cover having a canopy density of 70 percent and above.
  • Unclassed Forest: An area recorded as forest but not included in reserved or protected forest category. Ownership status of such forests varies from State to State.