Included here is the Chotanagpur Plateau of eastern India which covers much of Jharkhand state and adjacent parts of Orissa, West Bengal, Bihar and Chhattisgarh.

Tropical Dry Deciduous Forest

Remnants of these forests can be found throughout West Bengal and Orrisa, but possible the best examples occur of the Chhotanagpur Plateau, which extends through the states of Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal. In their climax state these forests usually have a thin but fairly complete canopy, but can be open in some of the dryer areas. On the Chhotanagpur Plateau the main trees include Anogeissus latifolia, Aegle marmelos, Croton oblongifolius, Lagerstroemia parviflora, Pterocarpus marsupium, Shorea robusta, Symplocos racemosa, Syzygium operculatum and Terminalia alata. The canopy can reach heights of up to 25 m and there is usually a sub-canopy at between 10-15 m. The shrub layer ranges from about 3-5 m. These forests support a number of endemic plants such as Aglaia haselettiana (Meliaceae), Carum villosum (Apiaceae) and Pycnocycla glauca (Apiaceae), but also a number of critically endangered species such as Butea monosperma, Diospyros melanoxylon, Madhuca longifolia and Shleichera oleosa. Away from the plateau species composition of these forests varies somewhat. In the districts of Bankura, Birbhum and Puruliya in West Bengal the main canopy trees include Bridelia squamosa, Buchanania lanzan, Butea monosperma, Cochlospermum religiosum, Diospyros exculpta, Haldina cordifolia, Madhuca indica, Schleichera oleosa, Shorea robusta, Sterculia urens, Tectonia grandis, Terminalia arguna and T. chebula. The shrubs include Antidesma acidum, Flacourtia indica, Meyna spinosa, Woodfordia fruticosa and Zizyphus rugosa, while common climbers are Aristolochia indica, Asparagus racemosus, Combretum roxburghii, Derris scandens and Tinospora cordifolia.


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