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DBT conserves 100 most threatened species of India

By targeting the most threatened group of plants in the wild and successfully conserving them, DBT has contributed significantly towards plant diversity conservation of the country which is so vital for maintaining our environment.

  • Ilex khasiana (Aquifoliaceae) – a critically endangered and endemic species of Meghalaya.
  • Only 7 individuals were reported by IUCN.
  • At present the species has more than 4000 individuals including newly inventoried natural populations.
  • 12

  • Ormosia robusta- only one individual left on this earth.
  • DBT’s initiative has saved the plant from extinction.
  • 13

  • In vitro culture of Rhododendron wattii
  • It is a plant endemic to India & part of of the IUCN Red List
  • Propagation of Cycas sphaerica from bulbils
  • It is a species found in Eastern Ghats in eastern peninsular India & part of IUCN Red List
  • 16

  • Plants of Podophyllum hexandrum ready for introduction in natural habitat in Leh, Ladakh
  • It is a high altitude plant identified as one of the most threatened species

The reasons for regeneration failure of 18 threatened species have been ascertained, and large-scale multiplication protocols for 55 species have been standardized. At least 40 species have been successfully introduced to the natural habitats for augmenting their natural populations.

65,282 individuals of 75 threatened plant species were discovered from their natural habitats using Ecological Niche Model-based field survey. This has improved the conservation classification of several threatened species, hence conservation strategy. Based on the population data, at least 30 threatened plant species have now been reclassified. Several new species/rediscovery of species/geographic extension of species have been reported under DBT initiatives. Taxonomic identity of several species has been established using molecular profiling.

It has been established that one of our ginseng species has high ginsenoside(Rb1) content which is more than that of American and Japanese ginseng. This provides the scope for value addition of a high value resource. Besides, because of its high value, domestication/cultivation-based conservation is being tried.