Mumbai: A book on wildlife tourism in Maharashtra has been launched as part of ‘Wildlife Week’.

Working closely with the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) and the Maharashtra State Forest Department, the editorial team of Sanctuary Asia, India’s leading wildlife and conservation magazine, has put together the work of some of India’s finest photographers and writers to help celebrate the natural heritage of the area.

The 180-page book ‘Wild Maharashtra’ presents the area, which has around 15 wildlife reserves, as a vibrant but fragile universe which is home to some of India’s most diverse and beautiful ecosystems and endangered animals, including the tiger.

According to MTDC, the forests and their wildlife could attract millions of people from around the world as eco-tourism becomes more popular,

Speaking at the launch of ‘Wild Maharashtra’, state tourism minister Chhagan Bhujbal said: “The state has great potential for wildlife tourism. There are many sanctuaries with unique bio-diversity, flora and fauna. Wildlife tourism will remain one of our focus areas for promotion of tourism in the state.”

The exhibition was aimed at providing local people, tourists and industry stake holders a new perspective on the state’s new tourism possibilities. The writers who have contributed to the book also believe this could lead to a dramatic restoration of the natural wealth of the state, which would be a key component in the economic and social renewal of the people.

The bio-inventory of Maharashtra’s assets includes plants and animals of the Konkan’s marine biomes, the ‘water towers’ and evergreen forests of the Sahyadri ranges in the Western Ghats, the grasslands of the Deccan Plateau, Vidarbha’s tiger-stocked Satpuda Range and Marathwada’s semi-arid biotope, which is home to the Great Indian Bustard.

The book is priced at Rs 2,950 (Dh209), with some images available on Sanctuary Asia website.