7 November 2011 - The first group of black-necked cranes (Grus nigricollis) arrived today in Phobjikha. At around 10.AM BST, a group of 4 cranes with two juveniles are the first group of cranes in Phobjikha this winter. As of today afternoon, the total number of 33 cranes including 5 juveniles. The weather today in Phobjikha was bright and clear sunny day.
It is truly said that “Life imitates Art”. With a couple of weeks remaining for the 13th Black-necked Crane festival, the local community of Phobjikha eagerly awaits the day with preparations in full swing.
The day brings community together and rejoices the arrival of Black-necked Cranes in the valley besides marking the importance of crane conservation. Hundreds of international tourists also join the celebration.
With less than a month remaining for the Black-necked Cranes to fly into the valley, preparation of a proper roosting area has been carried out as usual. Observations in the past years showed that the roosts maintained in the previous years couldn’t accommodate all the cranes in one spot, therefore this year a new spot was chosen for the roost with an area of approximately 40m x 50m.
The Royal Society for Protection of Nature (RSPN) as conservation and development partner to the Phobjikha valley had initiated a Community based Solid waste management project in the valley. The project aims to keep Phobjikha valley clean and free from waste and to make the place environment friendly. The project was funded by JICA office in Bhutan.
New York, 21 September 2011. Rwanda’s National Forest Policy was proclaimed the winner of the 2011 Future Policy Award. The Gambia’s Community Forest Policy and the US Lacey Act with its amendment of 2008 received the Silver Awards. The three winning policies which most effectively contribute to the conservation and sustainable development of forests for the benefit of current and future generations were announced on 21 September 2011 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
Bumitsawa, Pho Chu, Punakha
17th September 2011. At 7.58 am, a White-bellied heron weighing 5.6 kilograms was released from its flight pen at Bumitsawa in Pho Chu, Punakha. It was 134 days old at the time of the release from the research site. It was the first white-bellied heron chick hatched in a captive breeding.
The juvenile heron is tagged with a band numbered 32 on its right leg. It is also mounted with a 35gms Platform Terminal Transmitter (PTT) that will be useful in monitoring its whereabouts through a satellite data.
16th and 18th August 2011 - About 30 people representing various agencies (Government and non-government) such as Nature Recreation and Ecotourism Division (NRED), Association of Bhutanese Tour Operators (ABTO), Guide Association of Bhutan, Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB), Phobjikha Environment Management Commission (PEMC), Wangdiphordang Dzongkhag Administration, Gross national Happiness Commission (GNHC) local business community, Local Government (LG) and the local communities attended the study tour cum consultative workshop in Phobjikha.
Jigme Tshering, RSPN’s Project Officer based in Phobjikha attended a month long training in Germany
Cranes have been fascinating man since time immemorial not only for its elegance and beauty but also for its agile dancing, flight formations and loud trumpeting calls. These birds need large areas of forests, wetlands and barren land for feeding, roosting as well as for breeding. However, with increasing developmental activities around the world, forests are continuously being cleared and wetlands drained out.
Thousands of miles are covered each year during the migration. Some species even cover more than a dozen countries. Therefore it is important to know and understand even the temporary habitats used for stopovers and staging for necessary conservation of these habitats.
7th August 2011, BNCIC, Phobjikha - About 23 individuals (Aman Kora Resort employees, Phobjikha) volunteered to clean the campus of the Black-necked Crane Information Centre (BNCIC) in Phobjikha on 7th August 2011. The volunteers helped the RSPN field staff in cleaning the campus, erecting the fallen fencing poles and cleaning up the interior of the Centre.
Wildlife Conservation Division and WWF Bhutan program office. The book is a result of initiative taken by RSPN and the Research Team of RSPN. The book provides an overview of the white-bellied heron population, distribution and status in the country.29 July 2011, Thimphu: RSPN’s Chairman, Dasho Sangay Thinley (Rtd.) officially launched the book titled “The Critically Endangered White-Bellied Heron” on the occasion of the Global Tiger Day organised jointly by