February 29, 2020 09:17 AM NPT
By: Janak KC
The new vulture species
JAJARKOT, Feb 29: A rare species of bird, which used to be found in other districts of Nepal, has been spotted in Jajarkot district for the first time. This is a typical species of vulture recently seen in Jajarkot and is just another addition to the list of rare animals and birds found in this district. For many years, this district that lies at 1,700 meters from sea level has been identified as a famous hub for rare plants and animals all around the world. This new species of Vulture named as Raj Giddha was found in a pair in Aagrakhola, Barekot-1 of Jajarkot.
According to Govinda Bahadur Singh, a local from Jajarkot who has spent most of his life in the research and preservation of rare birds and animals, this species of vulture found in a jungle of Barekot Rural Municipality is one of the rarest birds found in the world. “Raj Giddha which possesses different and unique character than other vultures is generally found in the Terai region of Nepal. However, the finding of this bird in Jajarkot shows that it originally belongs to this district,” he said. Singh mentioned that according to bird specialists, Raj Giddha is a supremely powerful type of vulture which is mostly found snatching prays from other birds but no other birds can dare to come around it when it is feeding on its prey.
Previously, various other species of vultures like Sito Giddha, Hardford Giddha, Sun Giddha (Golden Vulture) and Himali Giddha (Mountain vulture) have also been found in this region along with their nests. Bird specialists state that due to destruction of Bombax tress and mixing harmful chemicals in dead bodies, the number of vultures have rapidly decreased in recent times. In order to overcome this decreasing number of vultures, bird specialists suggest that more Bombax trees should be planted and less chemicals should be used in dead bodies.
“Jajarkot is a district that carries huge possibilities when it comes to biodiversity. Hence it is important to conduct national level programs for the conservation and preservation of flora and fauna in the region”, said chairperson of Barekot Rural Municipality, Mahendra Bahadur Shah. Shah clarified that provincial level programs carry more strength than the local level programs which is why he finds it important to conduct national level programs in order to study and promote biodiversity in Jajarkot. Jajarkot is home to rare animals, birds like red panda and Cheer Pheasant and many other species. “If the local people, stakeholders and government can coordinate and work together, we can spread striking messages about biodiversity and rare plants and animals found in Jajarkot worldwide,” said Govinda Singh, a research specialist on animals and birds.
Preservation and promotion of unique biodiversity found in this district can even help in promoting Jajarkot as a tourist destination. “The authorities concerned should focus on places like Barekot, Kushe, Nalgaad and Bheri rural municipality jungles where varieties of rare flora and fauna can be found,” said a local journalist, Balkumar Sharma.
Sharma stressed the need for promoting biodiversity for the overall upliftment of the region. “This biodiversity adds up to our identity and thus the government should focus on promoting it for a better cause,” Sharma said.