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conservation-of-white-bellied-heron-and-its-habitats-along-the-sunkosh-river-through-community-engagement (Year:2019)



  1. Generate awareness and build capacity of the local residents on WBH conservation.
  2. Provide alternative options to river fishing.
  3. Enhance the foraging habitats of White-bellied heron.

GOALS: Strengthen the conservation of White-bellied Heron and its habitats in Bhutan.


The existence of White-bellied Heron (WBH) in their locality and its conservation needs are fully aware. The project team gained their strong support and motivation to conserve the species, through awareness programs and provision of fish ponds since people expect immediate and tangible benefits in return. The project played a vital role to inculcate a sense of conservation ethics and bring the community towards the conservation field. The awareness program was concentrated mainly along the river basins. 86 out of 300 targeted households were covered through awareness while most of the households lie away from the river basins.


National Geography Society

Implementing partners

Department of Forest and Park Services

Local Government

Tsirang Dzongkhag

Local Support Community Group


Bhutan Trust Fund for Environmental Conservation (BTFEC), Bhutan has consistently supported the implementation of WBH conservation program and has provided US$ 300,000 for the year 2019-2021.  However, to sustain and consistently carry both ex-situ and in-situ conservation work for WBH for the next 20 years, RSPN requires an estimated amount of US$ 150,000 annually. This can only be made possible with a White-bellied Heron endowment fund of US$ 3 million at 5% annual investment interest. So far, MAVA foundation in Geneva generously provided a grant of US$ 1.5 million to support WBH conservation in Bhutan. An additional USD 0.15 million was raised with the support of Philanthropist and other donors. RSPN still requires to raise USD 1.35 million to achieve the target. At RSPN, we believe a single grain of sand can tip the scale. You can be the grain that tips the scale towards improved environmental conditions and conservation efforts in Bhutan. RSPN has set a target to raise US$ 1.5 million for next 10 years.