Bombay Natural History Society launches climate change programme in Central Himalayas

Posted on:31 Jan 2017 09:22:23
Bombay Natural History Society launches climate change programme in Central Himalayas
31 January 2017 Current Affairs: The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) has launched climate change programme under which the first study funded by Oracle and facilitated by CAF-India, will assess the status, distribution and conservation of pheasants and finches in the Central Himalayas. 

The Himalayas hold a rich natural heritage with diverse flora and fauna enhancing the beauty of the region. The study will focus on their conservation in the context of climate change with the help of community participation. 

The Indian subcontinent is home to nearly 50 species of pheasants and 62 species of finches, with several species listed in 'Globally Threatened' category by IUCN. 

Both these groups are spread across the Himalayas. Shrinking habitats combined with several biotic factors, along with trapping and poaching pressures in many areas have pushed several of them to near extinction. 

Climate change can highly influence vertical and horizontal distribution of these groups making boundaries of protected areas fuzzy. The species that can adapt will survive but habitat specialist and species sensitive to temperature will suffer. The major aim of this project is to assess the status of phasinidaes and fringillidaes, particularly globally threatened species found in Himalayan region and evaluate their distribution .

This long-term monitoring project also aims to assess the socio-economic activities of local communities and involve them in conservation efforts and sensitize the local forest department staff. 

The project will contribute in making an inventory of pheasants and finches, documentation of local specific conservation issues, and designing local as well as species specific conservation action plan with the community participation. 

The conservation action plan of these sites is a first step towards the protection of the ecosystem which benefits both biodiversity as well as the people in the system. 

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