Thursday, December 23, 2010
The Lonar crater, situated in Buldhana Forest Division in Maharashtra, India, is a unique ecosystem in the world. It is believed that Lonar crater has been formed approximately 50 000 years ago by the impact of a large meteorite approximately 60 m across and a million tonnes in weight. It is an isolated deep saucer like depression nearly circular in shape and surrounded on all sides by steeply rising embankment to a height of 170 m. The crater is 1.83 km (6,000 ft) in diameter and 170 metres in depth. It is the largest impact crater in basaltic rock and is partially filled by a salt water lake. The presence of brackish water lake inside the crater having pH ~10 to 11 is a distinctive feature of the ecosystem. Fresh water springs on the slopes of the crater is another remarkable feature, which supports rich biodiversity inside the crater.
Lonar crater is having many micro-ecosystems with fascinating biodiversity. However, no systematic study has been conducted on ecological aspects of this crater. Some preliminary observations in this regard indicate that there exist approximately 9 micro-ecosystems, approximately 14 types of blue green algae, 5 types of alkaliphilic bacteria, 57 birds' species, and variety of reptiles, mammals, snakes, bats and colourful butterflies. Approximately 237 plant species belonging to 153 genera and representing 70 families have been recorded in the Lonar crater. Richness of biodiversity is evident from the presence of 128 herbs, 30 shrubs, 5 under shrubs, 19 climbers and 57 trees in the crater.
Movement Save LONAR: Lonar is declared as World heritage, but as usual this declaration is on paper & government / local resident are not taking any special care or precaution for the preservation. Only few local activist including Mr. Sudhakar Bugdane sir spend his life for making awareness among villagers. Our institute along with Khagol Vishwa, Pune has taken lead for the Save Lonar Movement. We march through village every year with banners & posters for preservation of Lonar crater, collect all the plastics in & around Lonar, delivering lectures in local schools & colleges about importance of Lonar.
Now again on 31 December & 1 January, we 72 students & communicators are going to Lonar. This is the end of International Year of Biodiversity. Soon will post details of the tour report.
Clear Skies !Dinesh Nisang