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  • Ex-situ Conservation | gbsanctuary.org
    natural habitat The two measures are complementary with the protection of natural habitat being primary The Sanctuary s conservation staff practices a mix of ex situ and in situ conservation Furthermore we nurture degraded areas to conditions of health by harnessing the restorative powers of natural succession and combining this with species rehabilitation Effective ex situ plant conservation requires a close knowledge of individual plant species as well as intimacy with the myriad complex environments they come from To grow plants well at the Sanctuary we need to be very familiar with their biology and ecology The Sanctuary is refuge to some 2 000 plant species more than a third of the region s flora Most of these plants have been rescued from degraded and destroyed environments They range from mosses ferns orchids balsams begonias and other herbaceous groups to climbers tubers creepers shrubs and trees Painstakingly over years the Sanctuary gardeners have discovered ways to grow them Every plant has a role to play in regenerating the ecosystem We focus on the native plants of the Western Ghats including mosses and liverworts ferns acanths orchids begonias and impatiens for several reasons More than 90 of the Western Ghats have been destroyed Endemism the occurrence of plants in one region and nowhere else is high in the Ghats Plants can be grown at the Sanctuary in conditions very close to their natural preference The work done regionally on the cultivation and conservation of native species is still hugely inadequate In our ex situ programme we propagate horticulturally challenged largely herbaceous plants that occupy highly specialized niches in the wild These species are not just confined to nursery areas but occur in regenerating populations sometimes of several thousand individuals in outplanted habitats along with hundreds of other species that grow without

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/exsitu.html (2016-02-14)
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  • Community at the Sanctuary | gbsanctuary.org
    edge of an endangered forest in an endangered biome in the Western Ghat mountains in India By community is meant simply this organisms voluntarily sharing a space together dependant on each other each one making it possible for another to live a life in community all together dependent upon and informing the surrounding earthly terrain including the winds and waters that flow through this terrain Depending on your perspective and interest this community could appear to you as any of these a plant sanctuary or a half way home for rare and threatened plants an animal sanctuary a botanic garden not the same as a plant sanctuary a human sanctuary a place of retreat and learning a wonderland of adventures meetings and mysteries an infant eco village The Sanctuary to some is also an elaborate inter species communal alliance in response to eco cide and hubris Photo Peter Oppenheimer The Sanctuary is Home for 9 dogs and 5 cows Home for 10 12 humans who live and work here year round year after year decade after decade even Workspace for another 30 40 humans A learning opportunity for young adults to grow skills in conservation and education A school in

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/communityatsanctuary.html (2016-02-14)
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  • Plants | gbsanctuary.org
    also individual plants Also that all these across the categories mentioned a each group have played a crucial role in deepening our love and understanding of life Another point to keep in mind this website is being written by only one of us the biases running through most of the descriptions here are those of its writer Talk to more of the Sanctuary gardeners and you ll learn more Orchids This family of plants the Orchidaceae is one of the half dozen plant families that started us off on our journey as plant conservationists Biologists will tell you orchids arrived relatively late in the evolutionary scheme of things They are a hugely varied family ranging from the outrageously ostentatious to the humbly inconspicuous Did you know that roughly one in ten flowering plant species throughout the world is an orchid That is of the 300 000 named angiosperms approximately 30 000 are orchids Many are highly specialised living only in very specific habitats and conditions or having evolved symbiotic relationships with particular species of insects They seem to be particularly prolific in cool tropical mountainous areas where there is year round cloud cover and mist and lots of rain In the Sanctuary you might come across some 700 species of orchids Those that don t belong to these mountains are restricted to the orchidarium and the ornamental areas of the garden Those that belong to these mountains will be found in myriad niches all over the land The orchidarium at GBS is like a large living library where it is possible to explore the extraordinary variations within this one family Visit the orchid section in the photogallery Here is an article we wrote many years ago on the orchids Ferns We love ferns at GBS Most of the 300 species of south Indian ferns and their allies the lycopods horsetails and whisk ferns are here in the fernarium and all over the Sanctuary Ferns are ancient plants going back some 400 million years reaching far into the primordial past to the times of the first forests Along with mosses and liverworts they are a critical indicator of the health of our rainforest as they are moisture dependent and cannot tolerate either low rainfall or loss of shade cover At the fernarium many topics in plant evolution are explored with visiting students All the significant plant groups are present here alga mosses hornworts and liverworts ferns gymnosperms gnetum cycad conifers Here is an article we wrote many years ago on the ferns Visit the fern section in the photogallery Then there are the aroids family Araceae of which two genera Amorphophallus and Arisaema have many species in the Western Ghats The world s largest inflorescence the Amorphophallus titanum from south east Asia also grows at the Sanctuary Visit the aroid section in the photogallery One of the most beautiful endemics of the Western Ghats is a member of the African violet family the Gesneriaceae called Rhynchoglossum notoniana During the height of

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/theplants.html (2016-02-14)
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  • Animals | gbsanctuary.org
    particularly how there are more now than there were a few years ago or a couple of decades ago the same can be said of plants it is remarkable how many more plants are here today than there were a few years ago or a couple of decades ago on this tiny stretch of land This is something we marvel at all the time how nonhumans come back when you put in practice a few simple principles Stop pumping toxins into the body of the land Cease any kind of clear felling Pull out invasive exotics Encourage and support natural succession increase areas under this Plant for diversity Respect what the land wishes to be Give time Plants and animals comes back You ll see Briefly we know there are 240 species of birds at the Sanctuary and 20 species of snakes at least 20 amphibian species some 15 species of small mammals itinerant deer gaur and elephant and more than 65 species of butterflies Of note are caecilians legless amphibians tree frogs shieldtail snakes king cobras Elliot s forest lizards Malabar trogons Green avadavats Nilgiri flycatchers and White bellied blue flycatchers Nilgiri martens and Nilgiri langurs If we include

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/theanimals.html (2016-02-14)
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  • GBS Features | gbsanctuary.org
    displays An exotic and ornamental section with several hundred unusual tropical and semi tropical plants from around the world Special groups carnivorous plants bromeliads and aroids Contiguity with natural forest the Peria Reserve Forest held by the Kerala Forest Department where elephants lion tailed macaques otters Nilgiri langurs Malabar trogons and king cobras live Farm and food production areas rice is grown in one of the two swampy valley fields Coffee and pepper plantation intermingled with fruit and native trees We even have a few acres under tea but these will be largely pulled out so that forest can grow instead There are scattered vegetable and spice patches and a small dairy for milk manure and biogas Community kitchen which feeds upto 50 persons at a time and like kitchens everywhere it is the hub of human and canine life at the Sanctuary A library with a lovely selection of fiction and non fiction books put together by the eclectic tastes of a few of us Plant texts dominate the shelves The library includes a computer a telephone and internet connection Slide presentations documentaries and films are shown here regularly With the exception of the diesel water pump the whole place runs on alternative energy systems solar biogas and wood We still cook with firewood despite the numbers we feed Recently we made the hard decision to get a connection to the mainline electrical supply for the dark monsoon months when we run the risk of running out of solar power and for usage of power machines in the workshop A small but well equipped workshop for carpentry masonry metal work plumbing and the numerous odd jobs that need doing on a daily basis Two guest rooms as well as various kinds of simple sleeping arrangements such as plant sheds

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/gbsfeatures.html (2016-02-14)
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  • Land | gbsanctuary.org
    can be rehabilitated or restored faster to a degree of health with protection succession and re introduction Significant change can therefore happen to a place that has been degraded by human activity and also to endangered populations of native plant species Much of the GBS lands were under lemon grass and tea plantations The return of shrubs trees and young forest with over 100 native tree species in a period of 15 years as well as springs wildlife and tender plants to such depleted places is a rare thing to see We also have a farm and dairy Year by year the produce from this way of forest farming increases the intention being to approach self sufficiency in rice spices and fruit and for vegetables during the dry period We have never been interested in the standard way of carbon offsetting with tree planting as this is inefficient requiring long term monitoring Besides few schemes guarantee the use of native species or of healthy diversity However many individuals have supported our efforts to nurture forest natural habitat recovery on degraded land This is a great carbon sink Also wildlife springs soil and hundreds of native plant species benefit from this

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/theland.html (2016-02-14)
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  • In a nutshell | gbsanctuary.org
    which only a fraction of original forest remains and a high percentage of species are rare vulnerable or threatened by imminent extinction The Sanctuary is run by a small group of resident gardeners naturalists and educators and supported by a wide circle of well wishers Together we offer an approach that is connected to the climate land habitats climate plants animals and people of the Western Ghats The work at the Sanctuary includes Ex situ conservation of native rainforest plants Education and public outreach Training local young women in horticulture and conservation Habitat restoration in degraded areas of the Western Ghats Supporting recovery of natural forest within our lands Research in biodiversity and conservation Forest farming growing food Participation in regional conservation People at the Sanctuary Founder and late Chief Wolfgang Theuerkauf originally from Berlin Indian citizen since 1981 Plant Conservation Laly Joseph Bryophytes Pteridophytes Balsaminaceae Gesneriaceae Suma Keloth Orchidaceae Araceae Zingiberaceae carnivorous and ornamental plants and Purvi Jain Fabaceae Poaceae Gentianaceae Asteraceae Acanthaceae Restoration Education and Outreach Suprabha Seshan Community Base Leelamma chef kitchen garden and farm Janu and Sugadha kitchen support Shailesh Nambiar dairy and supplies Sanctuary migrants Abhishek Jain Anna Theuerkauf Diba Siddiqi Sandilya Theuerkauf Sruti Yusufi

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/inanutshell.html (2016-02-14)
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  • Mukurthi National Park | gbsanctuary.org
    place unit area landscape in the world This group is entirely endemic to the Western Ghats half of which are found on this southwestern edge This is of great personal interest as we have been studying the Impatiens particularly the scapigerous Impatiens of the south and can unequivocally vouch for that fact that they are very tender extremely delicate species very vulnerable to climate change In addition Mukurthi itself may be a centre of speciation i e natural hybridization a process leading eventually to the formation of new species E g hybrids of I laticornis and I lawsonii I clavicornu and I pseudoacaulis can be found Some plants are found only within the Park or close to it like Avalanche or Sispara and nowhere else on the planet Some occur in gregarious dense populations Alchemilla Oldenlandia verticillaris Impatiens clavicornu etc and others as isolated individuals a strange shrubby Impatiens resembling I hensloviana How is it that there are so few of them There are very few ground orchids Relative to other high altitude areas of the south Mukurthi is sparse in this group Could the digging for pits have had an effect on the populations of ground orchids over and above climatic factors Exotic plant species can be found in almost every corner of the Park many traveled on their own nobody planted them In this forbidding tropical terrain with winter frost and gale force winds the plants that are spreading fastest are the exotics and one or two highly aggressive natives Mukurthi is very small Too small But how come its present shape why so long and so narrow Even with the contiguity to the Silent Valley National Park the New Amarambalam Reserve Forest and the South Division Reserve Forests the grassland area is absurdly small over and above its utter lack of width For habitats to retain their integrity does shape matter The press of wattle on the entire eastern edge will advance surely and cover the sliver of a strip that remains What is the problem with exotics why all the fuss It is unequivocally understood now that the third big stress on the natural world other than habitat destruction and climate change is the spread of invasive alien species Some settle around urban areas or agricultural fields but some penetrate into the heart of natural environment with sometimes devastating results All over the world exotic species are invading natural environments at a spectacular rate Bio invasion poses a threat more ominous some people feel than greenhouse gases industrial pollution and ozone depletion Alien invasive species operate on disturbed areas with a swiftness no native species can hope to match Feral Futures Tim Low MNP occupies 77 sqkms the Nilgiris are 2496 sqkm every other area is completely altered and only this western edge remains somewhat intact somewhat whole And yet of the 77 sqkm between 40 and 50 is under wattle Of our study area some 32 sq km in size half is under exotics The

    Original URL path: http://www.gbsanctuary.org/mukurthinationalpark.html (2016-02-14)
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