West Coast Tropical Semi Evergreen Forest

General description

This type is generally considered as a transitional stage from evergreen to moist deciduous and is often found at places where evergreen forests are subjected to disturbance. It is found between 600 to 800 m elevation and in some areas descends up to 500 m. Although it is a closed forest, unlike the evergreen, it is not so dense and the evergreen and deciduous species are mingled in the top storey. While the preponderance of evergreen species are more when they merge towards the wet evergreen type. Contrary is the case when the elevation descends and the forest tends to merge with the moist deciduous type. While buttressing is common, cauliflory is less marked.

In most of the localities Dipterocarpus sp. predominates in the top storey making the forest Dipterocarpus dominant. This gives the forest the status of a subtype of the major semi evergreen type.


Physiognomy of the top storey is a mixture of evergreen and deciduous species. The predominant evergreen species are Artocarpus heterophyllus, Bischofia javanica, Calophyllum elatum, Hopea wightiana, Mangifera indica, Mesua ferrea, Myristica dactyloides and others.

The deciduous ones are Acrocarpus fraxinifolious, Bombax ceiba, Dalbergia latifolia, Dipterocarpus sp., Pterospermum rubiginosum, Toona ciliata etc.

The species composition of the lower storeys, the ground flora, climbers etc., is the same as seen in the evergreen forests. In the lower elevations, where the semi-evergreen forests merge with the moist deciduous, there will be the presence of some deciduous species.