Geography of Sessa Orchid Sanctuary
The altitude of the sanctuary varies from 900 to 3,250 meters. The Bhalukpong-Bomdila highway forms its eastern boundary whereas its northern boundary is formed by the Tenga River valley. The sanctuary forms a part of Kameng Protected Area Complex, abbreviated as KPAC, which is the largest contiguous closed-canopy forest tract of the state. Sessa Orchid Sanctuary is covered with evergreen forest having a close canopy in addition to tropical and alpine vegetation. A plethora of waterfalls adds to the scenic landscape of this region.
Climate of Sessa Orchid Sanctuary
The place has numerous rivers and rivulets which meander beautifully through the sanctuary making the environment wet and humid. Continuous rainfall is received from the months of April to October. The high peaks of the sanctuary receive snowfall during winters.
Flora of Sessa Orchid Sanctuary
Sessa Orchid Sanctuary is the home to more than 200 orchid species including new and endemic ones. Liparis, Phaius, Eria, Coelogyne, Bulbophyllum and Dendorbium are the sub tropical genera of orchids found in the sanctuary. 7 endemic species of saprotrophic orchids form a unique feature of the sanctuary. A region of the sanctuary hosts 12 rare species of orchids belonging to different families. Bamboos, mosses and ferns can also be spotted in the sanctuary. Major woody species comprise Populus, Betula, Cedrus and Tsuga while the temperate zone has the abundance of Rhododendron and Quercus.
Orchid Research and Development Centre
In the late 1970, Government of Arunachal Pradesh created a post of orchidologist in the Forest Department. In the year 1989 Orchid Research and Development Centre (ORDC) was established at Sessa Orchid Sanctuary and Tipi. ORDC is engaged in the exploration and collection of orchid species, cultivation in orchidaria and gardens. The collection of orchid species is used for the study and conservation of them. It is also used for the creation of germplasm and multiplication of rare species through tissue culture techniques. ORDC discovered some new species of orchid, which are Biermannia jainiana, Cleistoma tricallosum, Dendrobium kentrophyllum, Epipogium sessanum, Eria jengingensis, Eria lohitensis, Gastrodia arunachalenisis and Herminium longilonbatum.