Members of our team are currently carrying out the consultation with community forest management groups and relevant officials in our six project districts (Dagana, Punakha, Wangdue Phodrang, Trongsa, Tsirang, and Zhemgang). The consultation activity is to mainly discuss the modality to carry out eco-restoration plantations to improve the degraded White-bellied Heron (WBH) habitats. 

A community forest managed by the local community is one of the sustainable means of managing the forest. As many of the forests along the WBH habitat fall under the community forest management group, the preference to support the existing community forest management group in enriching the WBH habitat was prioritized. The support has co-benefit of both for conservation of WBH and climate change mitigation through enrichment of habitat and also in improving the livelihood of community people by enhancing forest resources. With an annual target of eco-restoration of 12.5 hectares of WBH habitat for the next four years, the activity will bring huge benefits to Bhutan in terms of biodiversity conservation and building a climate-resilient society.

White-bellied Heron being at high risk of extinction with only less than 60 individuals remaining in the world, RSPN is stepping up with numerous conservation initiatives in close collaboration with the government and the community. Habitat enrichment and threat mitigations are regarded as urgent actions in saving the species. The activities planned are all action-oriented conservation efforts that are strategized in avoiding the compromise of conservation of biodiversity and the livelihood of people. 

The activity is conducted under the on-going BMU-IKI project and is currently implemented in partnership with the Royal Government of Bhutan.

The project is funded with the support from the Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), Germany through the International Climate Initiative (IKI) and co-funding from MAVA Foundation, Switzerland, and RSPN.