India: Biogeographical Diverse Landscape
India is situated north of the equator between 66°E to 98°E and 8°N to 36°N. It is bordered by Nepal, China and Bhutan in the north; Bangladesh and Myanmar in the east; the Bay of Bengal in the south east; the Indian Ocean in the south; the Arabian Sea in the west; and Pakistan in the north-west.
The varied edaphic, climatic and topographic conditions have resulted in a wide range of ecosystems and habitats such as forests, grasslands, wetlands, coastal and marine ecosystems, and deserts. The mountainous region covers an area close to 100 mha, arid and semi-arid zones are spread over 30 mha and the coastline is about 8000 km long.
India represents: (i) Two ‘Realms’- the Himalayan region represented by Palearctic Realm and the rest of the sub-continent represented by Malayan Realm; (ii) Five Biomes e.g. Tropical Humid Forests; Tropical Dry Deciduous Forests (including Monsoon Forests); Warm Deserts and Semi-deserts; Coniferous Forests; Alpine Meadows; and (iii) Ten biogeographic zones and Twenty-seven biogeographic provinces.
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