Status of Bangalore Wetlands: Strategies for Restoration, Conservation and Management
Kiran. R. and Ramachandra. T.V.*
Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, India


Restoration means reestablishment of predisturbance aquatic functions and the related physical, chemical and biological characteristics (Cairns, 1988; Lewis, 1989) with the objective of emulating natural and a self regulating/perpetuating system that is integrated ecologically with the landscape and the functions the wetlands perform. The goals for any restoration program should be realistic and tailored to individual regions, specific to the problems of degradation and based on the level of dependence. The restoration program should mandate all aspects of the ecosystems, including habitat restoration, elimination of undesirable species, and restoration of native species from the ecosystem perspective with holistic approach designed at watershed level, rather than isolated manipulation of individual elements. This often requires reconstruction of the physical conditions; chemical adjustment of both the soil and water; biological manipulation, reintroduction of native flora and fauna, etc.

Restoration goals, objectives, performance indicators (indicates the revival or success of restoration project), monitoring and assessment program should be viably planned,  so that, project designers,  planners, biologists and evaluators have a clear understanding. Monitoring of  restoration endeavour should include both structural (state) and functional (process) attributes. Monitoring of attributes at population, community, ecosystem and landscape level is appropriate in this regard.

Restoration strategy developed in collaboration with the government, researchers, stakeholders at all level and the NGOs should address the following.

  1. Set principles for priority setting and decision making,
  2. Prioritising goals, assessment and monitoring strategies based on specific roles they perform, level of dependency and type of problems faced by wetlands.
  3. Innovation in financing and use of land and water programs for better and sustainable usage of these resources.

It is deemed important to give priority to repair those systems that would have lost without any form of intervention.  A framework is to be developed categorising by the level of interventions required for prioritisation. [Committee on  Restoration of Aquatic Ecosystems et al, 1992]:

  1.   Those that recover without any intervention;
  2.   One's that can be restored close to their former condition to serve their earlier functions consideration cost involved, technical review of the restoration plan etc based on the goals and objectives set.
  3. One’s that cannot be restored to any agreeable degree viably.
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