Sri Lanka’s Mangrove Master : The man who spent 16 years of his life planting 2 million trees
Mangrove trees are of utmost importance, especially in coastal areas, where they are the best defense against tidal waves and tsunamis. Many poor fisher families in western Sri Lanka also rely heavily on mangroves for sustenance, with generation after generation deriving protein sources from the rich waters or sustainably harvesting the forests’ many by-products.
However, deforestation has put the trees in a precarious position, but one man has dedicated his entire life to protecting them. Douglas Thisera, also known as the “Mangrove Master”, has planted over 2 million mangrove saplings across his home country of Sri Lanka in a bid to preserve the precious foliage.
“I love mangrove forests very much,” Thisera told Great Big Story. “I can compare my attachment to mangroves like the connection between a tree and its bark.”