Ecological Research, Planning and Management

Areas of research include: 

Title: Documentation of local use of micro watersheds: Thamirabarani River Basin in Tirunelveli district

Overview: Supported by the State Land Use Research Board, the project aims to establish the baseline for a people centric watershed programme in the  Western Ghats of Tamil Nadu.

Title: Developing the Ecological Management Plan for Indian Institute of Technology – Tirupati Campus

Overview: Care Earth has had a long time association with the Indian Institute of Technlogy- Madras and Mandi. The Ecological Management Plan for the Tirupati Campus has been given to the institution. Field assessments of the candidate site at the Yerpedu, Chittor district have indicated that the landscape is indeed rich in its flora and fauna.

Title: Monitoring the impact of removal of Invasive Alien Species in the NBR

Overview: With the support of the Department of Evaluation and Applied Research and the Tamil Nadu Forest Department, Care Earth also accomplished a field assessment to monitor the impact of removal of Invasive Alien Species in the Nilgiris.

Title: Diversity and Conservation significance of forest birds in the Eastern Ghats of Tamil Nadu
Duration: 2012-15
Funding Agency: Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India

Overview: Also supported by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India, this study spread over three years, assessed the distribution and the richness of birds species in habitats of the Eastern Ghats of Tamil Nadu.

This particular study resulted in about 8,455 observations of 271 species of birds covering nine districts of northern Tamilnadu: Tiruchirapalli, Salem, Namakkal, Erode, Dharmapuri, Krishnagiri, Tiruvannamalai, Vellore and Villupuram. Birds were counted in the morning and evening in order to identify both the crepuscular and nocturnal birds. Out of these, about 40 species were identified as a common species of birds, the red-vented bulbul topping the list at 429 observations, followed by 300 observations of the red-whiskered bulbul. Types of habitats found in majority in this region included dense deciduous and semi-evergreen forests, open thorn forests, riparian forests, plantations, rocky hillocks with scrub and wetlands.

Developing a comprehensive Management Plan for conservation of Pallikaranai marshland
Duration: 2013-14
Funding Agency: Conservation Authority of Pallikaranai Marshland and District Forest Officer, Chengalpattu Division, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu Forest Department

Overview: This project aimed at maintaining the protection, restoration, and conservation of the Pallikaranai marshaland. It also looked at the development of a comprehensive management plan, based on the notion of the Adaptive Management, a flexible, inclusive and knowledge-based approach. This plan gives equal consideration to both people and nature, reconciling both conservation and development goals.

Keeping the anthropogenic degradation of the Pallikaranai marshland in mind, goals relating to habitat improvement must be addressed in a block of five years. Quarterly reviews of progress should be undertaken for mid-course correction. There should also be benchmarks to monitor accomplishments.

Title: Protection, Restoration and Conservation of Madhavaram-Korattur-Ambattur Wetland Complex
Duration: 2014-15
Funding Agency: Public Works Department, Government of Tamil Nadu

Overview: This project revealed that the Rettai Eri North, Korattur wetland and the Ambattur wetlands have been compromised, by the lack of a buffer system. Ambattur faces the most amount of contamination, when it comes to metal pollution; Rettai eri and Korattur follow respectively.

To eradicate such issues, de-stilting, dredging and sediment flushing have been suggested. We can also focus on maintaining the feeder channels and installing the water level monitors. Other recommendations include minimizing groundwater depletion, reducing ecological risks, and restoring wetland areas under invasive alien species of plants. The wetland area could also be promoted as a nature reserve and public space, along with creating thematic green spaces.

Title: Preparation of Environment Management Plan for Eco-sensitive areas- Environment Management Plan for Srirangam Town
Duration: 2014-15
Funding Agency: Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu

Overview: This project involved mapping out the environmental profile of the Srirangam town. It also sought to identify the environmental pollution hotspots and prepare a plan to carry out restoration programs that were previously damaged by activities such as rehabilitation and mitigation measures. Guidelines were also recommended for land use planning compatible with the environment.

From this project, recommendations were made to build the city on the basis of what stakeholders such as the temple administration, state line departments, residents, pilgrims, service providers, have to say. This can be achieved when a massive awareness and capacity building program is launched and sustained in the city. The program also needed to effectively depict the link between a clean environment and the sacred.

The need to evolve the city of Srirangam as a green city has been highlighted. Factors of this include tamper proofing garbage bins, placing digital boards on environmental hygiene, and using CCTV cameras for backstopping.

Title: Ecological Management Plan for the Proposed New Campus of Indian Institute of Technology Madras at Thaiyur, Kanchipuram District
Duration: 2015
Funding Agency: IIT (Madras)

Overview: These were the following objectives for this project:

  • To enumerate selected classes of plants and animals in around the proposed new campus
  • To assess the habitat use by these species and identify habitats of greater conservation value
  • To identify critical habitats that need to be maintained in order not to lose the biodiversity of the natural landscape on campus
  • To identify species of animals that will be the flagships in long-term ecological management

Title: Greening of the Michelin Campus CSR and Onsite Support
Duration: 2013-15
Funding Agency: Michelin India Tamil Nadu Pvt. Ltd.

Overview: The objectives of the project included:

  • Carry out greening activities under the purview of CSR programme
  • Greening of Michelin plant and its surroundings at SIPCOT. 

Title: Wetland Participatory Management Planning and Preparation of Wetland Action Plan for 11 Bird Sanctuaries in Tamil Nadu (Vedanthangal, Karikili, Vellode, Vettangudi, Kanjirankulam, Chitrangudi, Mela-Selvanoor, Keela-Selvanoor, Koonthankulam, Vaduvoor, Udayamarthandpuram)
Duration: 2013-2014
Funding Agency: Tamil Nadu Biodiversity Conservation and Greening Project, Tamil Nadu Forest Department

Overview: This project looked at developing a management and action plan based on primary and secondary studies. The aim was to develop a wetland action plan strengthening the Bird Sanctuary and enabling key stakeholders to engage in it.

The management plan included recommendations like identification of flagship species, water and wetland area management, biodiversity and habitat management, invasive species control and monitoring, management of wetland as public space through local community participation, etc.

Title: Developing Water Management Strategy and Action Plan for The Megamalai Wildlife Sanctuary, Guindy National Park and Erode Forest Division in Tamil Nadu.
Duration: 2013-2014
Funding Agency: Tamil Nadu Biodiversity Conservation and Greening Project, Tamil Nadu Forest Department

Overview: This study was to address the issue of water availability and identify water stressed areas. This was done through remote sensing and field assessment in project sites like Megamalai Wildlife Sanctuary, Guindy National Park, and Erode Forest Division.

Objectives of the project included:

  • To develop a water management strategy and action plan
  • To improve water retention capacity within seasonal or ephemeral bodies
  • To create permanent water holes
  • To manage and utilize the runoff water purposefully
  • To protect the water resources originating in the watershed
  • To enhance groundwater recharge
  • To extend the availability of water through appropriate interventions.

Building a Grassroots Constituency to Conserve the River Moyar in the Mysore-Nilgiri Corridor (Consultancy)
Duration: 2009-2011
Funding Agency: Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund

Overview: This project was drawn out in an effort to build the capabilities of decentralized democratic institutions. Through a process of participatory assessments, training and capacity building and joint development of the Micro Plan, Panchayats and local communities were engaged for the conservation of River Moyar. At least three out of the five Panchayats located along the river course had accomplished this.

A set of conservation actions included setting up the River Moyar Conservation Brigade, Vulture Watchers, and the Community Conservation Learning Centre.

2 Responses to Ecological Research, Planning and Management

  1. Ecological Management Plan for the Proposed New Campus of Indian Institute of Technology Madras at Thaiyur, Kanchipuram District suggested to be evolved on the lines of Smart- Campus.
    This would have enviro- initiatives of water, waste, greens, energy conservation and others. Campus having a cordon of trees on the periphery abating noise- vibration, air quality improvers, RWH, waste water recycling using phyto remediation etc.. Campus bio- waste is co composted with cow- dung.. Appropriate greening done with principles of sustenance… to be concluded Ajit Seshadri, Chennai

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