Recently, a new study by five botanists has revealed that the Cycas pectinata plant’s existence in the Himalayan country is threatened by overcollection as an ornamental plant and habitat destruction.
GS III: Environment and Ecology
Dimensions of the Article:
- Cycas pectinata
- Cycas pectinata belongs to the family Cycadaceae and is the only cycad species found in Bhutan.
- It is an evergreen, palm-like plant.
- Cycads are one of the most ancient gymnosperms, with a possible origin in the late Carboniferous period 300-325 million years ago.
- Gymnosperms have open-to-air unfertilized seeds to be directly fertilized by pollination.
- Cycas pectinata is classified as “Vulnerable” by the IUCN.
- Cycads contain valuable genetic information for scientific research and conservation efforts.
- They are bridges in major evolutionary transitions in plants and remain indispensable for understanding the origin and subsequent evolution of seed plants.
- Cycas pectinata has cultural and economic significance for native populations.
- Some locals in northeast India use the plant for religious ceremonies.
- Locals in some places (of Bhutan) use its seeds as a supplement to their diet, and young leaves are eaten as a substitute for vegetables.
-Source: The Hindu