All of our childhood stories mentioned forests in them. It was and still is a habitat for fairies, prince, princess and to most beautiful and exquisite animals. But what is a forest? Why is it so important for us to know about it? What would happen if these forests didn’t exist anymore? Let us hear out more stories about the forest.
Forest is an important part of the environment because it acts like lungs of the earth as it helps in the purification atmosphere and water. It also provides shelter and food to the living organisms like animals, plants, and microbes. It makes the raw material available for industries like timber, resins, gums etc.
Forest As a Habitat
Forest is a habitat for many plants and animals because it provides a suitable environment for them. For example, neem, Sheesham, Palash, tiger, porcupine, elephants, jackal etc. The ground beneath the tree of the forest is the forest floor. It consists of a root, soil, decomposers and decomposing organic matter.
Long, woody trees in the forest also provide shelter creepers and also the climbers. Millions of people live in forests and all of them including living outside the forests depend on the products we get from the forest for their livelihoods. Forests are home to 80% of the world’s terrestrial biodiversity.
Animals in the forest are very particular regarding their habitats. They need everything the forest provides in order to survive. During the climatic changes, the species migrate in search of a new place where they can adapt. These animals when they relocate they depend on forest land nearby to move from one place to another. There are many species that cannot live anywhere else and they absolutely require habitat similar to forests or a forest itself. More often than not, that need is specific.
As the population keeps on increasing so do their demands for the resources, keep increasing, and thus it leads to deforestation. With every acre of forest lost, due to the activities such as the development of places or construction of roads or timber production, wildlife habitats keep getting extinct and breaking apart.
Generally, forests provide habitat for most of the species of animals, plants, and microorganisms. This is wide in tropical rain forests. Now as these tropical forests convert into agricultural land; it critically affects the habitats in forests in terms of losses of biodiversity.
Questions For You
Q1. Which of the following is a natural habitat?
- None of the above
Q2. Forest is known as natural habitat because of:
- Provides food and shelter to animals
- Has specific set of plants and animals
- Is a natural resource
- Both A and B