Impact of logging on the diversity and regeneration in the forests of Shimoga and Uttara Kannada districts
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Logging for timber is an inevitable part of tropical forest management for several centuries now. Human needs for timber and wood based products (including fuel} is enormous. For instance, in India, the fuel and charcoal production was estimated at 1801 mil· lion cubic metres,the demand for Industrial round wood was at 1661 million cubic metres, sawn wood at 490 million cubic metres, panels at 125 million cubic metres and paper production at 238 million tonnes. The values show an almost 50% increase for the last 1 0 years. Thus, the demand for the wood based products .is increasing. However, the forest area that is available for meeting these demands is not increasing in proportion. Most forest areas are covered by the practice of logging at least once in the last 70 to 80 years. E~emptions are limited to core areas of national parks. Habitat fragmentation, developmental pressures, human settlements, pressures of the live stock and subsistence needs of the forest based communities are critical factors that can interfere with regeneration in a previously logged area. It is important for us to understand the factors that affect regeneration and survival patterns in the logged areas.