As part of CSR initiative of DCB Bank, we have created an open air butterfly habitat for special children of Divya Vidyalay, Jawhar and another one at the Yusuf Meherally Centre, Tara for their students and other visitors. This project is being implemented by the Ladybird Environmental Consulting LLP. Around 1000 butterfly attracting plants were planted at Yusuf Meherally Center, and 3000 plants were planted in the Jawhar School campus to create an open butterfly habitat where the butterfly life histories could be witnessed by the students. We have been conducting periodic plantation and butterfly population assessment along with butterfly awareness programmes for the students. The DCB staff will also be engaged in volunteering for the plantation, and habitat maintenance works throughout the project.
The butterfly habitats are acting as open-air butterfly garden for the students' with improvement of the environment around along with reducing temperatures during summer. An ecosystem approach of the project has fruited into increased students' interests in environment as they get an opportunity to observe butterfly life histories in their school premises as well as enhancement of the general ambience of school campus
The Divya Vidyalay, Jawhar is the only residential school for blind and special children living in the rural adivasi region of Palghar District. This school was founded by Smt. Pramila Tai Kokad in Thane District under the Shree Gurudev Sanstha. The butterfly habitat here was developed for DCB Bank Ltd in October 2019 in collaboration with Ladybird Environmental Consulting LLP. We planted 3000 butterfly attracting saplings of trees, shrubs, herbs and climbers in the school premises. Gardeners were being appointed to take care of the plants are they are doing it well. Students also help in the activities like de-weeding, removing of the invasive species in the butterfly habitat. The project duration is from September 2018- August 2021 with review visit every six months once.
The Yusuf Meherali Centre, Tara is a development NGO working with local communities. Under the sponsorship of the DCB Bank a butterfly habitat development project was implemented by the iNaturewatch Foundation in collaboration with the Ladybird Environmental Consulting LLP. A total of 1,043 butterfly attracting plants were planted for creating the habitat to support the local butterfly population. The project site is at Yusuf Meharally Center (YMC), Tara. The project duration is of one year (September 2018 to August 2019).
The project activities included plantation and installation of plant signages and conducting butterfly awareness programmes.
The school premises before the establishment of the butterfly habitat was a barren land with poor green cover. After the plantation of 3000 plants last year, the place now has turned into a lush green mini forest. All the plants have established themselves well and are growing beautifully increasing the aesthetics of school premises and making it look lively.
It has been almost a year since the establishment of the habitat in the school premises where all the plants have grown well with approx. 80% survival rate with total loss of 633 saplings. However the addition of regenerated plants (121 saplings) has brought down the overall mortality rate to 17%. The butterfly diversity has increased from 12 species at start of the project to 17 species in span of a year.
In the third quarter project review we saw that the habitat is thriving well with the ecosystem well established. Not only the plantation helped in increase in the floral diversity of the Yusuf Meharally Centre, but this also resulted in the increase in the faunal diversity such as birds, bees, other insects in the habitat besides butterflies. The total number of the plants have increased to 1356 from 1078 which was recorded during the review done in March 2019. This increase is due to the regeneration of plants like Jamaican spike and miracle leaf. Altogether, there was just 2% mortality has been recorded. The good survival rate of the plants has enriched the habitat and makes it lushes green. Since the start of the project there has been an increase in 10 butterfly species making the total species count of 41 species. The site is now regularly visited by various school groups.
Jawhar site: Before