AND PROSPECTS FOR THE USJ FOREST AND FIELDSTATION AT YAGIRALA
Sydney G Banyard
University of Sri Jayewardenapura
The 40 hectares of Yagirala Forest allocated to the Forestry Unit of the
University of Sri Jayewardenapura (USJ), consisting of blocks of Pinus
caribaea plantation, a small stand of Albizia falcataria, degraded Wet
Zone natural forest and a small patch of Gleichenia linearis (kekilla),
is currently being developed for training and research purposes. Initial
work focused on creating access into the pine plantation (having dense
Ochlanda stridula (bata) undergrowth), and underplanting using an intimate
mix of indigenous species (mainly hora, bedidel, Indian del, kos, nedum,
sapu, pihimbiya, madan, na, batadomba, kekuna, hedawaka, lunumidella).
Over 5,000 meters of access lines and footpaths have been established.
A 10 by 10 metre grid system, which will be used for management purposes
and which will form the basis of a Geographic Information System (GIS)
database, is being created.
All woody plants larger than 1 cm at dbh are being inventoried and entered
into a computer database. MSc forestry course students are encouraged
to carry out their research projects at Yagirala - seven have done so
to date. Other activities include the creation of Permanent Sample Plots,
Demonstration Plots, establishing a tree Nursery and "Arbor-gedera", and
the collection of seedlings of specimen tree species for the Arboretum
Two nature trails have been created and a clear potential for ecotourism
and recreation is recognised. The paper gives background information,
some interim research results on regeneration under pine and emphasizes
the potential for training and research and future prospects for the USJ
forest at Yagirala.
Department of Forestry and Environmental Science,
of Sri Jayewardenepura,Sri Lanka. 1999. All rights reserved.