Forest and Wildlife

The District has two Forest Divisions Viz. Kathua & Billawar and one Wildlife division viz. Jammu East Kathu Wildlife division.

Kathua Forest Division

This division has an area of 467.27 Sq. Kms. The Main tree species are Bamboo, Chir, Khair and other broad leaved species. According to survey, the Kathua Forests are rich with 178 plant species, 10 species of wild animals, 71 bird species and a large No. of speices of snakes and lizards. Division is divided into 3 territorial ranges Viz. Kathua, Samba and Jasrota. There is One Check Post Range (Lakhanpur). Total No. of compartments in the division is 267. There is one Soil Conservation Range.

Alongwith this division there is one Social Forestory Division and two Centrally sponsored Forestry Projects Viz. Thein DAM-I and Thein Dam-II operating in the district.

Recently, Forest Protection Force has been installed in the district headed by Deputy Director, Forest Protection Force assisted by One Asstt. Director, 6 Inspectors and 70 Guards.

Billawar Forest Division

This division has an area of 642.47 Sq. Kms. The Main tree species are Deodar, Chir, Oak, Kail, Khair and other broad leaved species. Division is divided into 4 territorial ranges Viz. Billawar, Bani, Basohli and Ramkote. There is One Soil Conservation Range.

Wild Life Division

Kathua District has 1 Wildlife Sanctuary at Jasrota with an area of 10.04 Sq. Kms. The Sanctuary has Wild Animals like Leopard, Deer, wild boar and snakes. 13 aquatic birds are reported to occur in Ujh Baraage near Jasrota. Wild Life Sanctuary is looked after by Wildlife Warden, Kathua.

Jasrota Wildlife Sanctuary lies on the Bank of River Ujh near Jasrota Village. The Sanctuary derives its name from the Historic Jasrota Fort. Earlier it was declared as Game Reserve under he provision of Old Game Act of 1942 by Late Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir. It came under the Administrative control of Jammu and Kashmir department of Wildlife Protection in 1984.

Area 10.04 Sq. Kms.

Altitudinal Range

336 to 520 Mts. Above M.S.L.

Rainfall

The average annual rainfall is 1000 mm.

Fauna

The area sustains a variety of Animals. Cheetal (Spotted Dear) is the Key Mammal species. Barking Dear, Wildboar, Rhesus Monkey, Jackal, Porcepine include the most common species of the area.
Avifauna Red Jungle Fowl, Peafowl, Jungle Bush Quail are among the principle bird species. Other species include Green Pigeon, Blue Rock Pigeon, Black Partridge, Wood Peckers and Bablers.
Water Fowl During the rainy season Ujh barrage attracts a number of water birds. They include Mallard, Pin Tail, Gadwal, Common Teal, Wigeon and common pochard etc.
Reptiles Python, Cobra and Lizard are reptelian denizens found in the Sanctuary.