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Senna spectabilis

4th July, 2024 Environment

Senna spectabilis

Source: The Hindu

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  • Kerala tackles the invasive Senna Spectabilis in Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary through removal and paper production in order to restore the ecological balance and reduce human-wildlife conflict.


  • Senna Spectabilis was introduced in between 1970s and 1980s in Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary to promote social forestry. Now it covers around 35% of Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, inhibiting the growth of native species.


  • It decreases the availability of host plants for butterflies and food for other herbivores.
  • It decreases the availability of non-timer forest produce.

Current Management Efforts

  • Methods like gridling, kerosene application, debarking are being applied under the Rebuild Kerala Programme.
  • Collaborative efforts with Kerala Paper Products Limited to cut down Senna and convert it into paper pulp.
  • Similar efforts are also made in Bandipore and Nagarahole Tiger Reserves.


  • Regulatory norms such as cutting of trees are prohibited in protected areas.
  • Senna Spectabilis is a hardwood making it difficult for eradication.
  • It is labour intensive due to its extensive root system.
  • Uprooting large trees may lead to soil erosion.

Senna Spectabilis




Grows in Tropical and Subtropical forests

Conservation status

Consider as an invasive species in various countries such as Australia, Cuba, India and Uganda

As per IUCN Red List it is categorised as ‘Least Concern’

Some of the other invasive species in India



Siam weed

Mexican devil (Ageratina adenophora)

Mesquite (Prosopis juliflora)

Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary

  • Location
    • It is located in Kerala and part of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and the Western Ghats.
  • Protected Areas Network
    • It shares boundaries with Nagarahole and Bandipore Tiger Reserves (Karnataka) and Madumalai Tiger Reserve (Tamil Nadu).
  • Tribal Communities:
    • Kuruma, Paniya, Kattunaicka, Urali, Kurichiar and Adiyar.


The Hindu


Q. Consider the following statements regarding Senna Spectabilis:

1. Senna Spectabilis is native to tropical America.

2.Recently Kerala government has initiated a programme to protect these plants from extinction.

3.It is crucial for the local ecosystem as it is commonly consumed by the herbivores.

Which of the above statements is/are NOT correct?

a) 1 and 2 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c) 1 and 3 only

d) 1, 2, and 3

Answer: b)