Tidal surges a threat to plantation in Shuvosandhya beach | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, June 11, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:47 AM, June 11, 2020

Tidal surges a threat to plantation in Shuvosandhya beach

Around 25,000 tamarisk trees uprooted by cyclone Amphan alone

The onslaught of super cyclone Ampan on May 20 wrought havoc to the large tamarisk plantation in Shuvoshandhya beach, a tourist spot in Barguna's Taltoli upazila, uprooting about 25,000 trees on 10 hectares of land and damaging the road connecting the spot.

Including it, about 50,000 trees of half of the 100-hectare forest have been lost as a result of soil erosion in the last two years, said Samir Ranjan Mistry, a forest officer in Taltoli Range.

The entire plantation area faces the threat of eventual extinction as the sand gets removed from the tree roots due to frequent tidal surges.

The forest department in fiscal year 2014-2015 started planting tamarisk trees on the 'Shubhosandhya' beach in Nalbunia area, about 10 km south-west of Taltoli upazila town, and the beautiful gardens gradually spread on about 100 hectares of land.

The man-made forest, adjoining the Bay of Bengal and the mouths of three big rivers -- Payra, Bishkhali and Baleshwar, offers nature lovers the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of sunset in the vast water.

The number of tourists saw a gradual increase there in recent years.

But cyclone Amphan uprooted thousands of trees in the forest adjacent to the beach, said Jahangir Hawlader, a local resident.

"About 100 feet of the road connecting to Shubhosandhya beach also collapsed due to the removal of sand. If the soil erosion affected by tidal surges continues, the tamarisk garden will head towards extinction and the area will lose attraction to tourists," he said.

Motaleb Hossain, president of Taltoli Press Club, said immediate steps should be taken to protect the beach from erosion.

In December every year, a big moon-lit night festival is held in the beach area, which attracts thousands of people.

Besides, thousands of tourists come from home and abroad every year.

​This correspondent during recent visit the beach found hundreds of uprooted trees falling on the beach and a portion of the road link badly damaged.

The tamarisk garden is reduced every year due to soil erosion by rains and tides, said forest officer Samir Ranjan Mistry.

"The matter has been reported to the higher authorities. A letter has also been given to the Water Development Board authorities to make an embankment on an urgent basis to prevent the breach," he said.

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