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Nijhum Dwipp - the Second Largest Mangrove Forest in Bangladesh
Adnan Mahfuz Tazvir

The Nijhum Dwip – the Second Largest Mangrove Forest in Bangladesh

The Nijhum Dwip – the Second Largest Mangrove Forest in Bangladesh

By Rahman Mahfuz and Adnan Mahfuz

The Nijhum Dwip (Silent Island), a beautiful small island, belongs to Hatia Upazila of Noakhali district in Bangladesh and is located adjoining the Bay of Bengal.

The Island has sea on three sides and the estuary of the Meghna River on the other side. Among the mangrove forests, Nijhum Island is claimed by many to be the second-largest mangrove forest in Bangladesh after the Sundarbans.

Ballar Char, Kamlar Char, Char Muri, and Char Osman – these four chars combine to form Nijhum Island.

The History of the Nijum Dwip is –

  • It emerged in the early 1950s as alluvium in the shallow estuary of the Bay of Bengal on the south of Noakhali.
  • These new sandbanks first drew the notice of a group of fishermen, who named it Baular Char.
  • The total area of it about 14,050 acres.
  • The Island extends from 22°05′ -22° 09’N to 9l°0l’ -91° 05’E;
  • Forest Department of Bangladesh initiated afforestation in 1974 on the north side of the Island, covering 9,000 acres. It now developed into a deep forest with a variety of plant species.
  • The Government of Bangladesh declared the forest-grown area ( 9,550 acres or 3, 865 Hectares) as forest as a National Park on 8 April 2001 to protect and develop the biodiversity of the Island.
  • In 1975, the Minister, Ministry of Forest, Fisheries, and Livestock observed the Island and named it ‘Nijhum Dwip (The Silent Island)’ observing its isolation and mild nature.
  • The population in 2016 was 25,000+
  • Four (04) pairs of deer released first. From those, the number of deer increased to about 22,000 by 1996. Later the food crisis and the oppression of wild dogs reduced the number of deer.
Images Courtesy: Worldheritagebd
Images Courtesy: Worldheritagebd



There are also 35 species of birds, 43 species of shrubs, and 21 other plants. Among them, the abundance of Keora tree is noticeable. To the locals, it is known as ‘Kerpa’ tree. Besides, the Keora Gewa, Kankra, Bain, Babul, Karamja, Pashur are also available. There too many other species are seen.

Images Courtesy: Worldheritagebd
Images Courtesy: Worldheritagebd

The unique attraction of the Island is the amphibian species of fish.

The name of the fish is ‘Marsripari’ (Fish Fairy). They can roam equally in water and on land. They look a bit like scribbled goby fish (Awaous grammepomus).

This Island is also a unique eco-touristic spot for its ideal natural setup with the rich bio-diversification factors. The National Park forest and it’s perennial mangrove forest with wild animals like spotted deer, wild boar, and rhesus macaque, dogs, foxes, snakes, and the ideal habitat for fish resources.

The Nijhum Dwip also a fly airport in the world. Every year thousands of migratory birds flock into Island during winter.

Bangladesch - Nijhum Dwip

The fishermen use sunny land as an ideal place for drying their catches fishes from the sea. This Island is also a perfect place of catches fish from the sea during the winter season. Usually, they construct straw huts on the Island as seasonal residences for catching and drying fishes.

There is a beach in the forest side of Nijhum Dwip, although not very long but quite neat & clean. There is no noise and an opportunity to spend time on your own. It is also a safe place.

The beach is not so turbulent but quite eye-catching. Tourists are impressed by the beach’s attraction and say, “If Kuakata is the daughter of the sea, so Nijhum Dwip is the son of the sea.”

Two types of beauty can be enjoyed by visiting Nijhum Dwip. One kind of beauty under normal condition, on the other hand, another beauty when the Island is submerged in the tide. The tide changes the look of the Island.

Ratargul water forest at Sylhet of Bangladesh or something like that seems to be Nijhum Dwip then. Nice view to enjoy. Additional attractions for the island trip are the Nijhum Island National Park and the Watch Tower.

When anyone climbs the tower, he/she can see all the islands at a glance. That is another loveliness, which is an unearthly joy to have the opportunity to enjoy

Overview of Nijhum Dwip National Park

In 2001, Government declared Nijhum Dwip as National Park

National Park Management:

The establishment and management of protected areas are one of the most important ways of ensuring that the world’s natural resources are conserved so that they can better meet the materials and cultural needs of humanity now and in the future.

Existing management techniques and facilities

The research methodology of the Environmental specialist has taken the management technique. The specialists have divided into the entire park for management. Ministry of Forest of Bangladesh observes the management program.

The specialist divided the entire park into various zones for management. The zones are:

  • Core Area: This is the most internal area of the park where all kinds of human activities are strictly prohibited. Its ecological balance is maintained naturally.
  • Management Zone: This is the outer part of the core zone. This is open for the visitors, and essential activity can be taken for its ecological improvement. This zone also has been divided into following sub-zones:
  • Strictly Protected Zone: This is the most inner part of the Management zone and just the outer part of the core zone. It is permitted only for visitation and strictly prohibited for human activity.
  • Re-habitation zone: This zone can be used for re-habitation for the local people.
  • Multiple Use Zone: The forest stuff can use this zone for multiple purposes.
  • Recreational Zone: This zone is used for the recreational purpose for the visitor to observe the natural beauty of the forest in the natural environment without hampering the forest component.
  • Recreational Zone: This zone is used for the recreational purpose for the visitor to observe the natural beauty of the forest in the natural environment without hampering the forest component.
  • Special Use Zone: This zone is used for the particular purpose of the improvement of the forest, such as research center, guest house, zoo, etc.
  • Special Use Zone: This zone is used for the particular purpose of the improvement of the forest, such as research center, guest house, zoo, etc.
  • Buffer Zone: This zone can be used for any purpose for the visitors, local people, and forest stuff, such as shop and another opportunity that provides for the people.

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