Photo used for indicative purpose only. Source: Internet

Five Himalayan Wetlands join hands to ensure secure habitat for Migratory birds

Shimla, Feb 27

Three Himalayan states have joined hands to look after the management of migratory birds in five wetlands. This will be a exercise to ensure the conservation of migratory birds coming to India from Central Asia.

A State level stakeholders’ meeting was conducted by Wetlands International South Asia and Bombay Natural History Society starting 27th February, 2023 at La Ri Sa Resort, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh. The meeting was conducted under the project “CONSERVATION AND WISE USE OF FIVE WETLANDS IN THREE HIMALAYAN STATES TO SECURE HABITATS OF BIRDS MIGRATING WITHIN THE CENTRAL ASIAN FLYWAY funded by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change under National Mission for Himalayan Studies (NMHS).

The meeting was attended by nearly 40 representatives from 19 state government departments, regional knowledge institutions, civil society organizations and community-based organizations.

Migratory birds counts at Pong Dam Ramsar site 108578: Bird Census

On the first day, Rahul Khot, Deputy Director BNHS, welcomed the stake holders and explained the importance of the Central Asian Flyway.

Sat Pal Dhiman, Joint Member Secretory HIMCOSTE delivered a special address and highlighted Government of Himachal Pradesh’s efforts towards conservation of the wetlands in the state.

Dr Anil Thakur IFS, APCCF (Wildlife) HPFD delivered the keynote address and highlighted the importance of Pong Dam Lake for the Bar-headed geese migration besides stressing on the need for the formulation of integrated management plans for Pong Dam Lake and Gobind Sagar Lake.

Dhruv Verma, Senior Technical officer, Wetlands International South Asia shared the project overview and explained the objectives of this meeting

Two round table discussions were held during day one. The topic for the first roundtable was about bridging science-policy action divide to support integrated management chaired by Sat Pal Dhiman, Joint Member Secretory HIMCOSTE, moderated by Dr. Sathiya Selvam, Deputy Director Wetland and flyways programme BNHS and the second dealt with building cross-sectoral convergence for conservation of important state wetland chaired by Dr Anil Thakur IFS, APCCF (Wildlife) HPFD and moderated by Arghya Chakrabarty, Technical Officer of the Wetlands International South Asia. Ravi Sharma, Scientific Officer, HP State Wetland Authority, discussed major challenges faced by the wetlands of Himachal Pradesh.

Dr Anil Thakur Associate Professor GWC explained the local diversity of plants and use of technological database for plant identification. Dr. Subrat Debta, Scientist A BNHS shared the information on bird migration studies in India.

This two days meeting would help to develop strategies and recommendations that could guide policy and decision-making at various levels, from local to national, to ensure the effective conservation and wise use of wetlands in the Central Asian Flyway. It is also aimed to foster partnerships and collaborations among stakeholders, including government agencies, civil society organizations, private sector, and local communities, to ensure a coordinated and effective approach to wetland conservation in the state of Himachal Pradesh.


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