Arittapatti village notified as first biodiversity heritage site in Tamil Nadu

Tags: State News

Arittapatti village notified as first biodiversity heritage

The Tamil Nadu government issued a notification declaring the Arittapatti village near Melur in Madurai district as a biodiversity heritage site under Section 37 of the Biological Diversity Act, 2002.

Important facts

  • Aritappatti village is known for its rich biological and historical significance.

  • It houses about 250 bird species, including 3 major raptor species – Lager Falcon, Shaheen Falcon, Bonelli's Eagle, and wildlife such as pangolins, pythons and slender loris.

  • The 'Arittapatti Biodiversity Heritage Site' is the first of its kind in the state and covers a range of seven barren granite hills in Arittapatti village.

  • This unique landscape of rocky hills acts as a water body and supports 72 lakes, 200 natural springs and three check dams.

  • The site also has various megalithic structures, Tamil Brahmi inscriptions, Jain beds and 2200 year old rock-cut temples which add to its historical significance.

  • As a biodiversity heritage site it will strengthen biodiversity conservation and protect from rapid loss of biodiversity.

About Biodiversity Heritage Site

  • These are areas that contain unique, vulnerable ecosystems consisting of terrestrial, coastal and inland waters and rich biodiversity of wild species including domesticated species, rare, threatened and keystone species.

  • It is also rich in different species.

  • As per Section 37 of the Biological Diversity Act, State Governments are empowered to notify, in the Official Gazette, areas of biodiversity importance as Biodiversity Heritage Sites, in consultation with local bodies.

  • In addition, till December 2021, a total of 22 Biodiversity Heritage Sites have been notified by 12 State Governments.

  • 159 plants and 175 animals have been notified as threatened species in 18 states and 2 union territories.

  • India's first Biodiversity Heritage Site was declared in 2007 at Nallur Tamarind Grove in Bengaluru, Karnataka.

Four Biodiversity Hotspots in India

  • Himalaya, 

  • Indo-Burma, 

  • Sunderland, 

  • Western Ghats

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