Forests are largely controlled by rainfall and temperature
conditions of the region. Forests cover nearly 37 percent of the total area of
the state. Mal-distribution poses a serious problem in the case of forest
resources of Orissa. The fertile coastal plains with a dense population lack
forest cover. Then again, remoteness of the forests from the consumption centres
and the bulky nature of their products need cheap haulage. Orissa is very much
lacking in this respect. The presence of a large tribal population practicing shifting cultivation on an extensive scale engenders direct loss of valuable
Geographical Classification of Forests
The Northern Tropical Semi-Evergreen Region
This area is composed of a dense tree growth 24-36 meters high.
The most striking feature of this region is the absence of bamboo growth. The
tropical semi-evergreen are concentrated around Bonai between the Champaharam
Pass and the Kurapadi stream of Bhagat Pass. They are also seen in the Redhakhol
region because of its elevation ands precipitation.
The Northern Tropical Moist Deciduous Region
This region accounts for almost 80 percent of the total
forest cover in Orissa. The Sal, dominates region north and north-east of the
Brahmani. It is also found to the east of Tel river and in the Sabari basin.
(Sal is the most valuable timber of Orissa). The Dendrocalamus stricts (Salia
baunse) and Bamboosa arundinacea (Kanta baunsa) are the two dominant species
which are found in the forests of the Eastern Ghats. They are confined to the
Mahanadi and Rushikulya basins. The hetrogeneous deciduous zone is the meeting ground of the Sal
and other species like Adina Cardifolia (Kusum), the Xylia Xylocarpa, the
Anogeissus Iatifolia (Dhau) and the Machilusvilloso.
The Northern Tropical Dry Deciduous Region
The dry deciduous type is confined to the upper Tel, upper
Nagavali and upper Sabari basins in the Western and South-Western parts of
Orissa. Here Sal and Bamboo thin out and teak pre-dominates.
The Coastal Forests
The dense growth of palm and coconut with long thin stems, deep
roots and a thin crown, has adapted itself nicely to the severe cyclones from
the Bay of Bengal during the pre and post-monsoon periods. Creepers of varied
species and canes and other minor types of trees have led to the description of
the tidal forests of the Mahanadi mouth as the 'Little Sunderbans'. On the Puri
coast, Casuarina plantation has met the town's demand for fuel. In between the
mangrove forest and the cultivated zone a narrow strip of grassland extends from
Chilka lake to the mouth of the Mahanadi and beyond.
The Main Forest Types
in The Eastern Ghats
A. (a) South Indian Moist Deciduous
(b) Southern Moist Mixed Deciduous
(c) Southern Secondary Moist Mixed
B. (a) Southern Tropical Dry Deciduous
(b) Southern Tropical Dry Mixed