Flora And Fauna
Near the snow line there are forests of rhododendrons and betula (bhojpatra). Below them are forests of silver fir, spruce, deodar, chir and oak. On the foothills and in the terai bhabhar area grow the valuable sal and gigantic haldu. Along river courses the Shisham grows in abundance. The Vindhyan forests have dhak, teak, mahua, salai, chironji and tendu. The hill forests also have a large variety of medicinal herbs.
Sal, chir, deodar and sain yield building timber and railway sleepers. Chir also yield resin, the chief source of resin and turpentine. Sisso is mostly used for furniture while Khair yields Kattha which is taken with betel leaves or pan. Semal and gutel are used as matchwood and Kanju in the plywood industry. Babul provides the principal tanning material of the state. Some of the grasses such as baib and bamboo are raw material for the paper industry. Tendu leaves are used in making bidis and cane is used in baskets and furniture.
According to an authoritative computation, there are species of woody plants, including trees, shrubs and woody climbers. Species of grasses have been collected from the Gangetic plain. Herbs include medicinal plants like rauwolfia serpentina, Viala serpens, podophyllum, hexandrum and ephecra gerardiana.
Corresponding to its variegated topography and climate, the state has a wealth of animal life. Its avifauna is among the richest in the country. Widespread in the jungles of Uttar Pradesh except in the higher reaches of the Himalayas, are found the tiger, leopard, wild bear, sloth bear, chital, sambhar, jackal, porcupine, jungle cat, hare, squirrel, monitor, lizard and fox. The most common birds include the crow, pigeon, dove, jungle fowl, black partridge, house sparrow, peafowl, blue jay, parakeet, kite, myna, quail, bulbul, kingfisher and woodpecker.
Certain species are found in special habitats. The elephant is confined to the terai and the foothills. The gond and para also found in this region. The chinkara and the sand grouse prefer a dry climate and have their habitat in the Vindhyan forests. The musk deer and the brown bear is found in the higher Himalayas. Among the game birds resident in the state are the snipe, comb duck, grey duck, cotton teal and whistling teal.
Several species of wildlife have become extinct in Uttar Pradesh. Among them are the lion from the Gangetic plain and the rhinoceros from the terai. The fate of many species is uncertain the black buck, serow, musk deer, swamp deer, bustard, pink-headed duck, chir and mural pheasants and four horned antelope. Although a determined enforcement of laws against poaching and hunting has yielded some results, the wildlife population today is alarmingly low. Alligators and crocodiles were killed ruthlessly for their skin.
To preserve its wild life the state has established one National Park; famed Corbett National Park and 12 game sanctuaries. The Corbett National Park is situated partly in Ramnagar and partly in the Kalagarh forest division. It is one of the showpieces of the state.