Goa is drained by seven major rivers of which the Mandovi and Zuari with the Cumbarjua Canal form the largest estuarine complex. Along the entire course of Goan rivers, there exists an intricate network of creeks and backwaters. A luxuriant growth of mangroves (some of which are degraded) and associated swamps can be observed along most of the water bodies within the estuarine reaches. The most prominent and extensive backwaters with mangroves are located along the East of the capital city of Panaji. The total area covered by the estuaries in Goa including the major Mandovi Zuari estuarine complex is approximately 12,000 ha of which the mangrove forest occupy 2000 ha. About 900 ha of mangroves are found along the Zuari estuary, 700 ha along the Mandovi estuary and 200 ha along the Cumbarjua canal. Mangrove Diversity in Goa
More than 59 species of mangroves have been recorded all over the world, out of which, 45 species are found in India. 12 of these species find their home in the saline waters of Goa. Flora Associated with mangrove
The Flora associated with the mangroves, are:
* Derris heterophylla
* Clerodendron inermi
* Acrostichum aureum
* Cyperus spp.
* Porteresia coaretata
* Ceasalpinia crista
* Salvadora persica
* Halophila beccarii
* Lannea grandis
* Abrus precatorius
* Thespesia populne
Fauna Associated with mangroves
The fauna associated with mangroves are as follows:
Pin tailed duck| Small blue kingfisher| Lesser wood shrike| Coots| Blue eared Kingfisher| Large cuckoo shrike |
Purple moor hen | White breasted kingfisher| Flying Foxes (bats)| Cormorants| Roller or Blue jay| Crocodiles|
Shovellor| Night Heron| Turtles|
Terns| Reef Heron| Otters|
Pond Heron| Common Sandpiper| Jackls|
| | |
Cattle Egret | Green bee eater| Snakes|
Little Egret| Black Drongo| Crabs|
Large Egret| Grey Drongo| Oysters|
Blackwinged Kite| Grey headed Myna| Fish|
Brahminy Kite| Tree pie| |
Uses of Mangroves
Mangroves provide a vide range of services and benefits to the mankind. They are instrumental in providing ecological and livelihood security to the people of coastal regions. The services provided by the mangroves are as follows- i. Prevention from soil erosion and stabilization of coasts and beaches. ii. Protection of land from tidal surges and cyclonic storms. iii. Aqua culture.
iv. Provides fuel wood, fodder, green manure, charcoal, timber etc. v. Used for boat/canoe making.
vi. Provides tannin.
vii. Used for thatching craft material, cordage and rope material. viii. Used for art and craft, bow making.
ix. Used as food and beverage.
x. Widely used for medicinal purposes.
xi. Useful for bee hives and provides wax and honey.
xii. Useful for recreational purposes as eco-tourism.
xiii. Provides an excellent home to birds and animals.
Problems Faced by mangroves in Goa
Increasing pressure on natural resources has lead the mangroves being exploited beyond their sustainable potential. Reclamation and exploitation...