Crane Count (2012-2013)
|Chumey (Bumthang)||5 Cranes|
|Last updated on January 28, 2013|
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Conservation and Sustainable Livelihoods
The RSPN having seen possessing full potential in conservation, it has been approved by Ministry of Agriculture to involve in the management of environmentally vital areas that lies exterior to the protected areas in the country.
With facilitation from Department of Forest, it has been approved for conducting research and development of management plans for Phobjikha, Ada, Tri-junction of Haa, Samtse and Chukha and Wamrong-Kangpara.
1. Phobjikha Conservation Area
Phobjikha under Wangdue is the largest wetland in Bhutan and also the largest roosting ground for the black-necked Cranes. Through bio-diversity survey of RSPN, it revealed 121 species of birds and 50 species of trees with large number of mammal species. It is being dominated by fir, spruce and pine, lying in the alpine wetland and temperate zone.
To make economic development and conservation a parallel program, RSPN initiated Integrated Conservation and Development Program (ICDP) in 1999 with financial grants from the MacArthur Foundation, USA. The main goal is to meet the aspirations of the local communities as well as to conserve the ecological significance of the area.
Phobjikha Management Plan
The management Plan for Phobjikha has been developed with support from a consultant. It has been completed and reviewed extensively by the representatives from the concerned stakeholders. The Government granted approval to the Society to carry out conservation activities as per the Management plan. It has been developed taking into consideration the Ninth Five Year Plan (2002-2007) of all the four Gewogs which fall under the Conservation Area.
The plan integrates Ada as a part of the management, mainly in view of maintaining ecological linkage and conserving the flagship species, White-bellied Heron. The Phobjikha Landscape Conservation Area (PLCA) will be governed by the four Gewog committee chairpersons, executive Director of RSPN, Manager of PLCA and representatives from the Department of Forest and Dzongkha Administration.
2. Goenshari Ada-Kamichu
The area is significant of the endangered White-bellied Heron. Till date, three nests have been discovered in the area and it makes an important area for conservation purposes.
RSPN initiated the study of the species in 2003 and over the past years, it has been able to study important aspects of the Herons. Many habitats in the area have been recognized as vital habitat that requires conservation which will enhance the protection of the Herons. The roads which run through by the riverside have been seen as probable challenge which encourages human settlements that will hamper the habitat of the Herons.
A task force formed will manage conservation of the area, closely with the Ministry of Agriculture, Department of Forest, and the Dzongkhag administration for necessary endorsement and encourage participation from sector officials and local communities.
Based on the existing data, the society will carry out nationwide survey on the socio economic and biodiversity status of the areas and habitats vital to White-bellied Herons conservation.
The area is known for special bamboo species Neomicrocalamus andropogonifolius locally known as “ringsoo”. Although the local community uses this bamboo to make marketable products, the lack of market outlet in the area has declined their market potentiality. The establishment of community-based natural resource management programs will benefit local people supplementing the area ecologically.
With the endorsement from the Ministry of Agriculture to engage RSPN in the conservation of the area, a task force representing different government agencies and organizations will be formed. In collaboration with the Dzongkhag and Dungkhag authorities, the officials and local community will involve in the planning and implementation of the programs and activities.
Preliminary studies in site selection will be carried out within the first year of its plan period followed by preliminary socio economic and biodiversity surveys.
4. Tri-junction of Ha, Samtse and Chukha
The Tri-junction area site has been proposed for ecological and exploration as it has not been explored previously. It comprises various ecosystems including four vegetation types mainly alpine, cool broadleaf, warm broadleaf and sub tropical forests.
Through management of conservation in the area, the Society can not only retain the virgin forest but also protect it as a haven for research activities. A biodiversity survey conducted in part of the area indicated that the area consist of rich species of plants.
Owing to its intactness, there is evidence of many fauna species like tigers, leopards, etc. The socio-economic survey has also shown that the local communities are reliant on shifting cultivation and nomadic cattle grazing which is a challenge to the implementation of the conservational plans.
A joint boundary survey between the Ministry of Agriculture and RSPN has been discussed. In order to execute the conservation activities, a task force comprising representatives from various related government agencies and organizations will be formed towards realizing an endorsement for lease management of the conservation area. The Society will collaborate and involve government sector officials working in the three Dzongkhags of Haa, Samtse and Chhukha in the planning and implementation of the proposed activities.