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Geographical Features Of Odisha

Odisha is located on India's Eastern coast, with the seas of the Bay of Bengal forming its Eastern and South-Eastern borders. Today, the region of contemporary Odisha is one of the most famous tourist attractions. It is the ninth-largest state in terms of land area and the eleventh-largest in terms of population. In this article, we will dive into the major geographical features of Odisha.



Location and Extent of Odisha

Odisha is located between latitudes 17°49'N and 22°34'N and longitudes 81°27'E and 87°29'E. Odisha's capital city is Bhubaneshwar (Cathedral City or Temple City).

It has an area of 1,55,707 square kilometres, accounting for approximately 4.73% of India's total land area.

Odisha has a 450-kilometer coastline that spans from Ichchapuram in the south to Subarnarekha in the north-east.

It stretches from Brahmagiri on Chilika Lake in the south-west to Chandabali in the north-east.

It is India's ninth largest state in terms of land area and eleventh in terms of population.

Boundaries of Odisha

Odisha is one of India's 29 states, located on the country's eastern coast.

Odisha is bounded to the north by Jharkhand, to the north-east by West Bengal, to the east by the Bay of Bengal, to the south by Andhra Pradesh, and to the west and north-west by Chhattisgarh.

Physiographic Region of Odisha

Odisha has been divided into five main morphological regions, which are as follows, based on homogeneity, continuity, and physiographical characteristics:

1. The Odisha Coastal Plains in the East

2. The Middle Mountainous and Highlands Region

3. The Central Plateaus

4. The Western Rolling Uplands

5. The River Valleys and Flood Plains

1.The Odisha Coastal Plains in the East :-These plains are recent depositional landforms that date back to the Post-Tertiary era in terms of geology. The Subarnarekha river in the northeast and the Rushikulya river in the southwest comprise the coastal plains of Odisha, which are located on India's eastern coast. The plains' western boundary is established by the 75-meter outline, which also serves to distinguish them from the middle mountainous region. This area, which is referred to as the Odisha Rice Bowl, is incredibly fertile. This plain is broad in the south, narrowest at the Chilika coast, and widest in the middle. The Hexadeltaic region, also known as the Gift of Six Rivers, refers to the coastal plains of Odisha. The Subarnarekha, Budhabalanga, Baitarani, Brahmani, Mahanadi, and the Rushikalya are these rivers.

The coastal plains have been divided into three sub-divisions:

Northern Coastal Plains/Balasore Plains

This is the worst-affected area in Odisha due to drought. It encompasses the Budhabalanga and Subarnarekha rivers' flood basins and deltas up to the Baitarani River.

Cuttack-Puri Coastal Plain/Middle Coastal Plains

It is situated between the Rushikulya River's Southern and Northern Coastal Plains. The combined deltas of the Salandi, Baitarani, Brahmani, and Mahanadi rivers are located in the north, and the Mahanadi river is located in the south. The widest area is the Mahanadi delta.

Rushikulya Plains/Southern Coastal Plains

It is made up of the Rushikulya River's fluvial. It consists of the smaller Rushikulya River deltas and the Laccustrine Plain of Chilika Lake. Three other zones, which run parallel to the coastline and comprise the Southern Plains, are as follows:

(A)The Salt Tract

It is a thin strip that extends between 4.8 and 9.6 km beyond the coast. It is surrounded by tidal woodland and located near the ocean. It has no agriculture at all and is covered in salt. This is a challenging location to go through because of the slow, brackish streams. Known as the Little Sunderbans, it is a tidal forest located in the Mahanadi Delta.

(B)The Arable Tract

The region in the midst of the plains is also referred to as rice country. In terms of agricultural productivity, it is the most prosperous area in the entire state. Levees are also a part of this section. Large areas of land are covered by high floods, which has an impact on both human and animal life.

(C)The Sub-montane Tract

The plains are to the west of it. It is the point where the Eastern Ghats' spurs (stimulation) meet the arable tract. Another name for it is the transition zone. The red dirt makes up the majority of this zone. Although there are some low-laterite soils in this area, soil erosion is still a major problem there. The area is naturally covered in sal woods, thorny plants, and stunted shrubs.


2.The Middle Mountainous and Highlands Region

Approximately three-fourths of the state of Odisha is comprised of this region. This area is elevated between 610 and 1068 metres above mean sea level. It is situated within India's peninsula. The area is characterised by several watersheds and primarily consists of the Eastern Ghats' hills and mountains. In the east, these hills and mountains rise sharply, whereas in the west, they gently slope to a divided plateau. It is distinguished by several watersheds. The mountains stretch from Malkangiri in the north-west to Mayurbhanj in the northeast. A series of wide and narrow river valleys and flood plains break up the Eastern Ghats.

Deep and narrow valleys have been carved in this area by the principal rivers of Odisha, including the Bajtarani, Brahmani, Mahanadi, Rushikulya, Vamsadhara, and Nagavali, as well as their tributaries. The middle mountainous region is separated morphologically into the following regions:

(A)Simlipal and Megbasani Mountains These mountains are of volcanic origin, with a round and dome-shaped structure. These mountains range in elevation from 600 to 1050 metres. In this area, Simlipal (900 m) and Meghasani (1147 m) are the two major peaks.

(B)Mankadnacha, Malayagiri and Gandhamardan mountains of the Baitarani and the Brabmani interfluves The peaks of this mountain range are oriented north-south. Malayagiri, Mankadnacha, and Gandhamardan have respective elevations of 1170 m, 1092 m, and 1044 m. These belong to the Eastern Ghats, a polycyclic geographical area.

(C)Watershed between the Brahmani and the Mahanadi These mountains have a similar origin to the Baitarani and Brahmani interfluves, which are areas between neighbouring water channels' valleys.

The Mahanadi and Brahmani rivers' continuous activity has caused these mountains to become increasingly sliced. The northern portion of these mountains runs north-west, while the southern portion runs north-north-west to south-south-west.

(D)Common Interfluves of the Mahanadi, the Rushikulya and Vamsadhara This severely damaged watershed stretches from north to south. This area has an elevation range of 600–1000 metres. Numerous peaks in the area soar higher than 1200 metres. Important peaks in the area are Singaraju (above 1500 m), Mahandragiri (above 1500 m), and Devagiri (1360 m).

(E)Potangi and Chandragiri Mountain Ranges The tallest mountains in Odisha are these ones. The region is very divided, with these mountains dividing the Nagavali and Sabari basins. These mountain ranges range in height from 900 m to 1350 m on average.

This range includes the highest mountain in Odisha, Deomali mountain (1672 m). It is located in Odisha's Koraput district. Galikonda (1643 m), Sinkaram (1620 m), and Turiakonda (1598 m) are three other high peaks in this range. The farmers use terrace farming in the valleys, but there is no vegetation on the hilltops due to shifting agriculture.

3.The Central Plateaus

These plateaus are located on the mostly eroded Western slopes of the Eastern Ghats. This area varies in elevation from 305 to 610 metres. Both of the state's major plateaus are:

The Panposh-Keonjhar-Pallabara Plateau of the Upper Baitarani Catchment Basin

The Simlipal mountain in the east, the Mankadnacha mountain in the west, and the Singhbhum and Ranchi plateaus in the north encircle this area. The principal river that drains this area is the Baitarani. This is the area that experiences heavy rainfall in the winter and monsoon seasons.

The Nabarangpur-Jayapur of the Upper Sabari Basin Its eastern border is shared by the Chandragiri and Potangi mountains, while its western boundary is occupied by the Bastar mountain. This area is drained by the major river, the Sabari, and its tributaries. This region receives more than 178 cm of rain a year, which is the state's greatest rainfall area. This is why a high-quality variety of rice is grown here.


4.The Western Rolling Uplands

Compared to the plateaus, which range in elevation from 153 to 305 m, these are lower. The following morphological units comprise the undulating uplands of the West.

(A)Rajgangpur-Panposh uplands of the Koel and the Sankh rivers.

(B)Jharsuguda uplands of the Ib basin.

(C)Baragarh uplands of the Jira and Jhaun basins.

(D)Balangir-Titilagarh-Patnagarh uplands of Northern Tel basin.

(E)Bhawanipatna uplands of the Southern Tel basin.

(F)Malkangiri uplands of the Sabari basin.

5.The River Valleys and Flood Plains

The state's principal rivers' fluvial action is responsible for these valleys. The flood plains and river valleys are between 75 and 150 metres above sea level on average. These valleys are deep and narrow in the upper parts, moderately wide in the middle, and widen to their greatest extent in the lower region where they meet the state's plains. 

Important river valleys of the state are are:

(a)The valley of the Mahanadi river

(b)The valley of the Brahmani river

(c)The valley of the Vamsadhara river

The river valley flood plains are exceptionally productive. The majority of agricultural activity occurs in these river-created flood plains.

Lakes and ports in Odisha

Numerous natural lakes, including Samagarh, Udyankhanda, Sar, Ansupa, and Tampara, can be found in Odisha. Naraj, Jobra, Hirakud, Balimela, Rengali, Mandira, Hadagarh, and Poteru are just a few of the man-made lakes. The deepest natural port in India is called Paradeep, and it is the only one. Gopalpur and Chandbali are medium-sized regions, whilst Dharma is a fishing harbour.

About the Author

Shreya Giri is a talented SEO content writer with a unique flair for captivating readers. With a bachelor's degree in geography, her passion for crafting exceptional content shines through in every word she writes. Shreya's expertise lies in her ability to seamlessly blend language and storytelling, effortlessly capturing the attention of her audience.

She is currently pursuing a Master's degree in geography and has a remarkable talent for transforming intricate concepts into captivating narratives that have a lasting impact. With Shreya, you can expect excellent, captivating content that will keep you engaged from beginning to end.

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