IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis

Red Sanders                                                                     

12th January, 2022 Environment

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Context: Red Sanders falls back in IUCN’s ‘endangered’ category. It was classified as ‘near threatened’ in 2018


About Red Sanders (Red Sandalwood):

  • The species, Pterocarpus santalinus, is an Indian endemic tree species.
  • Geographical range: restricted in the Eastern Ghats. It is endemic to a distinct tract of forests in Andhra Pradesh
  • Protection status: ‘Endangered’ category in the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List.
    • IUCN Red list : The IUCN maintains a list called the Red List — of flora and fauna species and categorises them based on their conservation status.
    • The status ranges from ‘least concern’ for the species that are abundant in numbers to ‘extinct’ for those that have completely disappeared from the planet.
    • Species that come under ‘critically endangered’, ‘endangered’ and ‘vulnerable’ categories are considered threatened, according to the IUCN categorisation.


  • known for their rich hue and therapeutic properties.
  • Are high in demand across Asia, particularly in China and Japan, for use in cosmetics and medicinal products as well as for making furniture, woodcraft and musical instruments.


Why its status is downgraded?

  • Threats: Over-exploitation and smuggling.

  • Natural causes:
    • Slow growth of the species and continued harvesting leaves no time for recovering naturally
    • Cattle grazing and invasive species.


What is the difference between Red sander and sandalwood?


Facts about red sander: