Sundarbans is the largest unique natural diversity mangrove forest in the globe the Bangla word ban stands for forest the name Sundarban was made either from the forests of most extent Sundari tree ie Sundari-ban other people think from the forests of the Samudra (sea) ie, Samudra-ban and from its association with the primitive tribe Chandra-bandhe which was deprived of into Sundarbans. The general people accepted this explanation that derivation from the Sundari tree. Mangrove area in the delta created by the confluence of Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna Rivers in the Bay of Bengal. It spans start from the Hooghly River in India’s state of West Bengal to the Baleswar River in Bangladesh It covers an area of ten thousand square kilometers along Bangladesh and India. Bangladesh is covered by about 2/3 of the forest Bangladesh has about six thousand square kilometers of the total area which about one thousand seven hundred square kilometers is occupied by waterbodies other portions are landform forest its area spread over three districts of Bangladesh namely Khulna, Bagerhat, satkhira. Sundarbans have four administrative ranges as viz Chandpai, Sarankhola, Khulna and Burigoalini, which has sixteen forest stations and divided into fifty-five compartments and nine blocks two forest divisions, consists of about 200 islands, separated by about 400 interconnected tidal rivers, creeks, and canals. Diversity array of trees and forest wildlife is unique of natural history and center of economic activities like extraction of timber, fishing, and collection of honey. Tab under the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997.
Biodiversity of Sundarbans:
Sundarbans is a mysterious reservoir of natural cuddles all of its children with utmost love.
About 32,400 hectares of the Sundarbans have been declared as three wildlife sanctuaries, Wildlife sanctuaries of Sundarbans are divided three Zone
- East wildlife sanctuary (5,439 ha)
- South wildlife sanctuary (17,878 ha)
- West wildlife sanctuary (9,069 ha)
These wildlife sanctuaries are playing a vital role in the conservation of Sundarbans biodiversity. from tiny insects to large Royal Bengal Tigers dwell in its ecosystem. Survival of its animal highly depends on the time high tide and low tide. Different animal species come out from its muddy soil when water goes down at low tide and hosts a large variety of animals as 50 species Mammals, about 320 species migratory birds, about 50 species of reptiles, 8 species of amphibians, and about 400 species of fish in this forest.
The forest habitats there are about 50 species of mammals Besides the spectacular Royal Bengal Tiger (Panthera tigris), the other notable mammalian, Rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta), Leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis), Jungle cat (Felis chaus), Barking deer (Muntiacus muntjak), deer (Cervus axis)the Indian porcupine (Hystrix indica), Otter (Lutra perspicillata), and wild boar (Sus scrofa).
Royal Bengal Tiger is the scariest animal of Sundarbans.people who collects honey from Sundarbans are mainly attract this tiger. Now only 400 of these tigers are left in Sundarbans. Wild Boars are also seen Sundarbans they are aggressive by nature. Monkey a significant number of monkeys can be seen in Sundarbans these monkeys have a special kind of relationship with the deer of Sundarbans .they drop Keora branches for the deer from the top of the tree.
Different colors, numerous species can be seen in this forest. Over 50 species migratory and are mostly represented by the waterfowls. The egrets, herons, storks, sandpipers, bitterns, curlew, and numerous waders are seen along the muddy banks and have 22 species Accipitridae (kites, eagles, vulture, harrier, etc), Nine species of kingfishers, The rich avifaunas include species of woodpeckers, barbets, owls, bee-eaters, bulbul, shrikes, drongos, starlings, mynas, babblers, thrush, oriole, flycatchers, etc.
Some bird builds their nest on the top branches of the trees. They are fond of eating fruits and seeds of the trees as the parrot, Dove, Mynah mention among them. Woodcutter eats hiding insects from the tree. But most of the birds live on fish like some species here kingfisher, Falcon, kites, Pelicans, Heron, etc. Nature not only poured its beauty throughout Sundarbans but also decorated some parts of it with scary looks.
there are 50 species of reptiles as the Estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), some of which may attain a length of about seven meters .long time ago estimated to be around 250 and Species of lizards, including the Monitor Lizards Varanus, turtles, and snakes are well-represented. Among the snakes, the King Cobra (Ophiophagus hannah), Banded Krait (Bungarus fasciatus), Russell’s Viper (Vipera Russell), Rock python (Python molurus), and several species of sea snakes are notable in a forest.
Crocodiles might you while traveling on the boats. Sometimes they are sun on the land while basking the sunshine. Immediately after the duck, some nocturnal small come out in search of food. Several species of bats and snakes have mostly seen among them this snake is an expert at hunting Frog and small fish.
Only eight species of amphibians as the green frog (Euphlyctis hexadactylus) is mostly getting the Chandpai area of the mangrove forest, Cricket frog (Limnonectes limnocharis), the Skipper frog (E. cyanophlyctis), Tree frog (Polypedates maculatus), and the common Fidders crab.
400 species of fishes in its varied aquatic habitats and invertebrates some molluscs and crustaceans contribute important fisheries resources. About 20 species of shrimps, 7 species of crabs, 8 species of lobsters, several species of gastropods, and 6 species of pelecypods. Among the shrimps, Penaeus monodon and Metapenaeus Monoceros and the mud crab Scylla Serrata are commercially important and 300 species under 22 families have been recorded from the mangrove forest habitats.
Fidders Crap is a very familiar aquatic animal in the forest. Male craps usually have large claw and female crabs don’t possess a claw. Mud creeper is a fish that uses its fins for traveling on muddy soil. It lives by eating slit and detritus from the mud surface. Other aquatic animals are snails, jellyfish, and different species of fish.
The vegetation of Sundarbans:
The vegetation of mangrove forest numerous flora encompasses as shrubs, grasses, epiphytes, and lianas. Mostly evergreen, they occupy more or less similar physiological and structural adaptations. Most of the trees have pneumatophores for aerial respiration and pieocing out of the ground is notable of the example of their adaption Keora, Sundari and Goran possess this kind of pneumatophores. Another kind of root adaption is still root which comes out from tree stem and helps to stand the trees on the soil. The prominent species is Sundari (Heritiera fomes), Gewa (Excoecaria agallocha), Golpata (Nipa fruticans). recorded by Prawn in the 1903 year 334 species under 245 genera, 17 are pteridophytes, 87 monocotyledons and the rest are dicotyledons. The plant species as 35 legumes, 19 sedges, 29 kinds of grass, and 18 euphorbias. recorded Of the 50 type mangrove plant species in the world, the Sundarbans alone contain 35. Almost all mangrove flora species are evergreen, shrubby, dwarf, or tall trees, and growing gregariously without leaving any space on the floor
Sundari (Heritiera fomes):
Sundarbans was named after this plant. But this plant species is now in a miserable state by suffering from top dying. Increasing the salinity of the water is one of the main causes of this disease. The height of various trees of Sundarbans Is also decreasing because of the salinity and the number of Gewa and Goran is increasing. Timber obtained from the Sundari plant is this region for its durability in making furniture.
Golpata (Nipa fruticans):
Golpata have a large amount of Sundarbans. In Bangla Golpata (gol mean circular and pata mean by leaf) But it’s leaf not circular as the name says. Actually Golpata is a kind of palm tree and has fruit as circle. It produces tasty and molasses obtained from fruit is sweet and Healthy. Widely used for building houses on the coastal area and rooftops of boats. These serving as one of the sources of livelihood of the local people and collect it trees by traveling on a small boat and some of the large engine boats.
Sun grass-like plant was the contributor to growing today in this forest. Then keora, Bain, passur, Goran came gradually this is called pioneer species and the finally Sundari and Goran appeared as climax species.
This gradual process of growing a forest land is called succession as well as direct evidence in Sundarbans. for sustaining in an uncongenial environment of in this forest plant species upgraded their adaption power to a special extent and different form, characteristic, growing ness is very diversity hilly, plane or any forest.
Kakra (Bruairea Gymtnorrhiza):
produces stilt roots for their standing support .the leaves of mangrove are usually thick and juicy. Another adaption procedure of mangrove is viviparous germination in this type of adaption germination of seeds that happens on a tree. An extension comes out from the seed which helps it to stable on mud.
Local people life:
Village grown on the bid of the river can be seen at its entrance. Each family of these villages depend on Sundarbans for their livelihood some they catch fish 70% of local people are fisherman. They depend on their catching fish. Their fish process are very adventure strategy risky. The fisherman and Sundarbans relationships are very close, and some live by collecting fuelwood or honey. Mawalis (honey collectors) come into Sundarbans in search of honey for their living. they travel here and there of Sundarbans in search of honeycomb. Bees of Sundarbans are very ferocious. They are ready to sacrifices their lives for saving their comb process driving the way the bees from their hive starts mawalis see a hive filled with honey. They make one kind of flare from leafs known as karu. Then they lit the karu for producing smoke. When bees smell the smoke they think the forest is on fire. There is no way to save their comb so they start to leave their honeycomb so they start to leave their hive for their lives. Mawalis take the full advantage of misleading the bees. Splashes of joy touch their mind when they collect a bit more honey than usual. They return to their loved once happily. Some people live in the boat on the river at night.
Best Time to visit Sundarbans:
The summers (March-May) in the Sundarbans area are so hot in this cause mostly humid and all-around unsuitable.as a result Maximum visitors and locals alike tend to avoid this season for visiting forest. The temperatures range 30 to 42 degrees Celsius in the summer months. in this area is a scarcity of water hot season The monsoons (June to September) months of are laden with heavy rainfall. the mangroves, which are famous attractions thrive and rejoice in the showers and the animals as well get the release from the summer heat by way of the rainfall during. The temperatures drop down to suitable 25 to 35 degree Celsius but one of the main disadvantages of visiting in the monsoon is the fact that the river is the primary mode of transport to the park, is overflowing with rainwater all area of forest full mud it makes extremely risky for transportation and access to the forest premises. For this reason, monsoons are not the right time to visit the park. Winter( November – February) is the best time to witness the beauty of this forest and the climate in the winter is so quite pleasant and provides relief to the animals living in the premises to explore the forests and experience the natural beauty of the region. There is more chance for visitors to spot the animals and bird species as they come out of hiding and boat safari is make possibility as the river is not over flooded inasmuch it is not dangerous. The temperatures range from 10 degrees Celsius to 30 degrees Celsius during the winter season. Tourists can walk around and participate in many activities without any worrying. So winter is the ideal time to visit Sundarbans.
Location of Sundarbans:
The world largest mangrove forest located in the southwestern part of Bangladesh and lies on the river as Ganges-Brahmaputra Delta in the southeastern west Bangla state, northeastern India, add to southern Bangladesh point where it merges with the as well as The tract extends about 160 miles (260 km) west-east along the Bay of Bengal reaches inland for about 80 km (50 miles) at its broadest point. The forest couch south to the Tropic of Cancer between the latitudes 21°30’N and 22°30’N, and longitudes 89°00’E and 89°55’E.