Researchers find significant species of trees at Byculla zoo

The research, undertaken by Samira Rathod Design under the aegis of SIRCLE (Spade India Research Cell) found 3,213 trees and 60 significant species in Byculla zoo

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Mumbaikars line up at Byculla zoo to catch a glimpse of its star attraction and it is nothing but penguins. Well, penguins and other animals attract visitors, but this time, it is the green cover that has attracted the researchers. During a study at the zoo, researchers found similar trees in Byculla zoo that are found in Australia, Sri Lanka, Venezuela, African countries, Malaysia, Myanmar, West Indies, Cuba, and Peru. 

The research, undertaken by Samira Rathod Design under the aegis of SIRCLE (Spade India Research Cell) found 3,213 trees and 60 significant species in Byculla zoo which is also known as Rani Baug. The garden with a zoo is spread over 53 acres and has a Grade II heritage botanical garden. The study catalogued 853 plant species in 149 families, making a total of 3,213 trees.

At the entrance of the zoo, the researchers also found two Baobab trees, which are known to have a life of over 100 years, from Africa which was recently announced as endangered by the United Nations. The Baobab tree has nine species and the species found in Mumbai (Adansonia digitata) is not as threatened as the ones in Africa (Adansonia grandidieri).

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The researchers have concluded that the trees are extremely rare and need to be protected. According to a survey conducted by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), there are 120 Baobab trees across the city. 

The rare trees on the zoo premises include Krishna Vad or Indian Banyan, Baobab, Roze of Venezuela, Tree of Heaven, Gustavia Insignis and Crescentia Cujete, also known as Beggar’s Bowl.

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