GENERAL

FORESTS

The district has an area of 731.41 square miles under forest. The forest area makes 11.30 per cent of the total geographical area of the district as against 17.56 per cent for the whole of Maharashtra State.

The Ahmadnagar forest division consists of Ahmadnagar, Osmanabad and part of Sholapur districts. The forests in the district are divided as protected forests and reserved forests and the rest as unclassed forests. The total forests area [Area in hectares.] in charge of the Forest department in the district is classified below:-

Total forest area in charge of Forest Department

Reserved forests

Protected forests

Unclassed forests

Percentage of the forest area to the total area

99,494.964

97,693.964

1,801.000

--

6.78

The forests in the district represent the "Southern Tropical Dry Deciduous" type. They are scattered in sheltered pockets of spurs and valleys and are situated mainly in Akola, Sangamner, Ahmadnagar, Shrigonda, Parner and Rahuri talukas.

The commercially important species found in the forests are teak, neem, babul, sissoo, sandalwood, etc. Other important miscellaneous species are khair, hiwar, herkal, amoni, apta, bet, etc. The growth is stunted and poor due to poor soils and lack of adequate humus. Vast stretches of grass-lands are also found. The species of grass commonly found are kusal, dongari-gavat, pavanya and marvel.

In the Rajur and Akola ranges some ever-green species also grow. The forests consist of the following species:-(1) Ano-geissus latifolia (Dhawada), (2) Terminalia tomentosa (Ain), (3) Launea grandis (Moyen), (4) Boswellia serrata (Salai), (5) Cassia fistula (Bahawa), (6) Bauhinia racemosa (Apta), (7) Phyllanthus emblica (Amla), (8) Tectona grandis (Teak), (9) Terminalia chebula (Hirda), (10) Santalum Album (Chandan), (11) Acacia arabica (Babul), (12) Eugenia jambulana (Jambhul), (13) Pongamia glabora (karanj), (14) Feronia elephantum (Kavit), (15) Madhuka latifolia (Moho), (16) Melia azadirachta (Nimb), (17) Acacia catechu (Khair), (18) Ailanthus excelse (Maharuk), (19) Prosopis spicigera (Saundad), (20) Grewia tiliaefolia (Dhaman)

Among the shrubs the following are found:-Rhusmysorensis (Amoni), Cae salpinia sepiaria (Chillar), Lantana camara (Tantani), Gymnosporia montana (Henkal), Carrissa congesta (Karvand), Mundulea suberosa (Supli), Cassia auriculata (Tarwad), Mimeroa haomata (Arati), Butea superba (Palsvel) etc. The common grasses are Sheda, Gondal, Chirka, Marval, Paonya, Kusli, Kunda and Rosha.

The forests in Akola and Sangamner talukas produce small quantity of teak poles, charcoal, firewood, grass and myrobalans. The forest produce is transported in trucks to Ghoti and Sangamner markets. The important market for the Ahmadnagar forest division is Ahmadnagar, though the production in that forest division is very meagre.

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