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New gin berry species discovered in southern Western Ghats

Published: 7th Mar, 2022


Recently, Botanical Survey of India (BSI) has discovered a new gin berry species from the Kanyakumari Wildlife Sanctuary in Tamil Nadu.


About the new species:

  • The species, named Glycosmis albicarpawith a distinct large white fruit, is endemic to the southern Western Ghats.
  • The species belongs to the Orange family, Rutaceae.
  • Berries of Glycosmis species have the unique characteristic of ‘gin aroma’ and have gained in popularity as an edible fruit.
  • The species is also a larval host plant for butterflies like other species of Glycosmis.
  • The species is an evergreen small tree.
  • It was found as undergrowth in Tirunelveli semi-evergreen forests at the Panagudi forest section of the wildlife sanctuary.
  • Though flowering, natural regeneration and seedling recruitment of this taxon is found to be fairly good within the locality, while habitat modification causes a major threat to the survival of this species.

About Botanical Survey of India (BSI):

  • Botanical Survey of India (BSI) is the apex research organization under the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
  • It carries out taxonomic and floristic studies on wild plant resources of the country through survey, documentation and conservation.
  • It was established in 1890 under the direction of Sir George King. 
  • The organization’s mandate was to explore, collect, identify and document the rich plant resources of the erstwhile British India.
  • The department has also developed a digital platform ‘Indian Plant Diversity Information System (IPDIS).

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