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  FORESTRY SYMPOSIUM 1996
A STUDY OF BIODIVERSITY IN THE CATCHMENT ZONE OF HIYARE RESERVOIR IN GALLE DISTRICT.

M P de Silva
University of Ruhuna

The Hiyare reservoir is a natural reservoir in the Galle district Sri Lanka. This reservoir is a major source of drinking water to the city of Galle. The catchment zone of the reservoir consists of about 600 acres of a rather well preserved lowland rain forest and its conservation is therefore of significance. Further, Mahadola, which is a major stream that enriches the river, originates here.

The floristic composition of the forest consists of important canopy tree species of which 9 endemic species - Hora (Dipterocarpus zeylanicus), Bu - hora ,( Dipterocarpus hispidus), Dorana (Dipterocarpus glandulosus), Pini - baru (Hopea jucunda), Kekuna (Canarium zeylanicum), Godapara (Dillenia retusa), Thiniya ( Doona congestiflora ), Uru - honda (Kurrimia ceylanica), Beraliya - dun (Shorea dyeri) - were identified. Among the other life forms 5 endemic bird species, 6 endemic freshwater fish species and 2 endemic amphibian species have been recorded.

Though the area is a strict forest reserve, poaching for wild-boar, collection of endemic fish species for aquariums, collection of rare medicinal plants (eg. Wanaraja), ferns and bryophytes have been reported. In view of the reported high diversity and endemism of species in the catchment zone, a systematic analysis of the flora in the catchment zone of the reservoir was undertaken. The paper reports the floristic composition ( including ferns, bryophytes, lichens etc ) and structure of the forest and the socioeconomic impacts on its conservation.

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Department of Forestry and Environmental Science,
University of Sri Jayewardenepura,Sri Lanka. 1999. All rights reserved.