Forestry & Wildlife

Forests and tree resources in the State can be broadly grouped into (a) those that are categorised as forests primarily under Government ownership and management and (b) trees outside forests. The recorded area of reserved forests in the State is 11,309 sq km contributing about 29.11 per cent of the State's geographical area. As per the 2017 assessment made by the Forest Survey of India, the total forest cover in the State including plantations is 20,321 sq km which is about 52 of State's geographical area. On comparing 2017 FSI report with 2015, it is found that in the case of forest cover within recorded forest area, the extent of open forests and moderately dense forest in Kerala has dwindled whereas the area under dense forest has moderately increased.
In the case of forest cover outside recorded forest area, a slight increase in area in the year 2017 over 2015 is found in all the three categories, viz., very dense forest, moderately dense forest and open forest (FSI Reports 2017, 2015).
Out of the total forest cover in the State, Idukki District is having the highest forest cover with 3,139 sq km, followed by Pathanamthitta (1,830 sq km) and Palakkad (1,826 sq km). On comparing the 2017 FSI data with 2015, increase in forest cover is recorded in 9 Districts viz., Ernakulam, Kannur, Kasaragod, Kottayam, Kozhikode, Malappuram, Palakkad, Pathanamthitta and, Thrissur, while decrease is observed in Alappuzha, Idukki, Kollam and Wayand Districts, it remained the same in Thiruvananthapuram District.
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Source : Economic Review 2019