Ahead of World Environment Day, a conservationist tells the story of Mumbai's green soldiers expected to put up a serious fight
Illustration/ Uday Mohite
Did you know that the Koli community worships the mangroves? That's because the trees, growing in brackish water at the interface of land and sea, are the breeding ground of young fish, and help generate revenue for the community. "They are a refuge for many marine organisms. The mangrove forests at Thane Creek also protect over 20,000 flamingoes that visit Mumbai every year. Both species (Lesser and Greater Flamingoes) feed on the mudflats during low tide, but rest along the creeks flanked by thick mangrove cover as they feel much safer here," says Dr Anish Andheria, president, Wildlife Conservation Trust and member of the Maharashtra State Board of Wildlife.
Dr Anish Andheria
This evening, Andheria will conduct a talk on Mumbai's green lifelines as part of Godrej India Culture Lab's World Environment Day (June 5) celebrations. The event is presented in collaboration with Soonabai Pirojsha Godrej Marine Ecology Centre. "The talk will highlight how mangroves are integral to our eco-system, being the only trees that help build land. They are the first line of defence during a natural calamity. I will also discuss how the number of mangrove species and the range of its cover has depleted due to land grabbing."
An avid wildlife photographer, Andheria is set to showcase a photo-series from his trips to mangrove forests across India. On the sidelines, check out an exhibit displaying the wildlife that thrives in the mangrove vestige of Vikhroli.
On: Today, 5 pm
At: Godrej One, Pirojshanagar, Vikhroli (E).
Originating in Southeast Asia, mangrove forests are found on coasts throughout the world's tropical and subtropical regions. "Mumbai's mangroves have a history older than the city, which is made up of seven islands surrounded by mangroves. The British, on realising the commercial importance of the islands off the Arabian Sea, ordered the clearing of the mangroves that rimmed the once-separated islands to create a continuous land mass then known as Bombay," informs Nishigandha Pednekar, executive assistant - director at BNHS.
What's cool about mangroves?
20 Number of mangrove species in Mumbai of which Avicennia and Rhizophora constitute 80 per cent of the cover
Whoa! Ranbir Kapoor looks exactly like Sanjay Dutt from 'Rocky'
Vintage Mumbai: City's history that will leave you spellbound
Video: Ishan Khattar ignores Shahid Kapoor's warning over Jhanvi Kapoor
Download the new mid-day android app to get updates on all the latest and trending stories on the go https://goo.gl/8Xlcvr
Devendra Fadnavis launches Mangrove encyclopaedia app13-Jul-2017
Thane: Forest department sees pink over flamingo deaths28-Jun-2017
Mumbai: Is Mankhurd's green lung going to the huts?13-Jun-2017
Are trees chopped for Mumbai Metro being dumped near mangroves?03-Jun-2017
Mumbai: Kandivli locals win back 30,000-sq ft park after 8-year battle16-May-2017
Mumbai: 400 structures on Cuffe Parade mangrove land axed06-May-2017