USAID's Bagh Activity (a project implemented by WildTeam) has partnered with Khulna University to measure the concentration of essential nutrients in three major plant species of Sundarbans, Sundri, Gewa and Goran, from the leaf samples collected during the field research season in 2015-2016.
The sustainable conservation of tigers requires a holistic approach that looks beyond tigers. Tigers and the plant species are parts of an interconnected Sundarbans’ ecosystem that is highly influenced by the nutrient dynamics and it’s cycling from soil to plants and animals and then back to the soil.
The analysis is a part of Bagh’s habitat monitoring program to assess the threats to the Sundarbans ecosystem to help adopt improved management plans. Bagh partnered with the Forestry and Wood Technology Discipline of Khulna University to carry out the study in its Nutrient Dynamics lab led by renowned scientist Dr. Mahmood Hossain. Bagh’s Research Officer for Mangrove Ecology Mr. Md. Rakibul Islam Khan is assisting the team in the lab research. Salinity affects the growth and nutrient intake in Sundri, Gewa, and Goran. The nutrient content (Sodium, Potassium, and Nitrogen) analysis of these dominant plant species will provide information about nutrient accumulation in plants in different salinity zones of the Sundarbans. Additionally, the sodium concentration will also affect the palatability of these plant species to herbivores like deer and pigs.