Good citizen science experience downstream of Everest helps monitor status of wetland birds

Hem Sagar Baral, Laxman Prasad Poudyal

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


High mountains tend to create vast rivers and wetlands downstream. In the Hindu Kush-Himalaya (HKH) region those features are extreme. These wetlands are of massive extent and offer unique habitats for species; birds are flagships of those situations. For instance, the Koshi river makes the largest floodplains of all the rivers in Nepal, has the highest silt load and also considered as the most dynamic river not only in Nepal but the entire south Asia. This unique wetland is fed by rivers that originate in the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) of China as well as Nepal. The Arun, Tamor and Bhote Koshi are three major tributaries of Koshi that originate in Tibet. Based on local communities and local knowledge, here a citizen science experience is shown for the HKH region how such works can be used effectively for conservation, habitats and people alike. It’s the longest running citizen science programme in the region, and we have been maintaining a large set of data for specific locality for the last 30 years. While some species fare pretty well, others are on the decline (e.g. Baer’s Pochard Aythya baeri, Black-bellied Tern Sterna acuticauda, Eurasian Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia, Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata, Black-necked Stork Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus) and with watersheds and water tables on the generic decay, even in protected areas. Those decays are crucial problems for down river regions and their people waiting for better management.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHindu Kush-Himalaya watersheds downhill
Subtitle of host publicationLandscape ecology and conservation perspectives
EditorsGanga Ram Regmi, Falk Huettmann
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9783030362751
ISBN (Print)9783030362744
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2020


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