Natural Resources Conservation (NRC)
As per the spirit of the NTNC Act, natural resources conservation is the primary thematic area of NTNC with focus on forest/habitat conservation and wildlife conservation. The major issues of concerns related to natural resources: deforestation, land/habitat degradation, and loss of biodiversity. To address these concerns, we focus on institutional capacity building at national, regional and local level to promote local stewardship of the natural resources,
site specific programs to protect wildlife species, and for the conservation and management of forests, rangelands and wetlands so as to maintain wildlife habitat and sustenance of ecosystem services. Research, survey and documentation, and monitoring and evaluation are two major components that support its core activities.
Project-wise focus programs:
Under natural resource conservation program (NRC), local level Conservation Area Management Committees (CAMCs) and subsequent sub-committees are formed to mobilize local people to carryout different program and to encourage and institutionalize their interests in the overall conservation and development of ACA. This Program includes activities such as nursery management, plantation, community mobilization, wildlife monitoring, capacity enhancement of local people in conservation area management.
Under natural resource conservation program, MCAP provides both technical and financial support to strengthen CAMCs. The CAMCs are regularly given capacity building trainings to make them more capable to manage their natural resources in a sustainable manner.
Under this program, nurseries have been set up for community and private plantation. Regular forest patrolling is undertaken by the CAMCs to reduce poaching.
Natural resource conservation has been the major focus of BCC. It has been involved in monitoring of tigers, rhinos, ungulates, birds and vegetation in and around CNP. Tiger/Rhino census is held in every five years in the CNP. Similarly, a long-term monitoring program has been designed with establishment of permanent vegetation study plots and transects lines for wildlife observation in different habitats of CNP and Barandabhar Corridor Forest (BCF).
Under wildlife management program BCC has provided technical support in translocation of rhinos from the Chitwan National Park to the Bardia National Park and Suklaphanta Wildlife Reserve and blue bulls from Lumbini to the forest of Banke District. BCC has helped to capture problem animals such as man-eater tigers and has helped in medication of rhinos, elephants, leopards, wild water buffalo and other wildlife species. It provides support to the Elephant Breeding Center and Gharial Crocodile Breeding program of the Department of National Park and Wildlife Conservation.
Under its forestry program, degraded land in Baghmara, Jankauli, Kumrose, Kathar, Bhandara, Piple and Ratna Nagar have been restored through active local participation. Consequently, park animals have colonized the extended habitats, which has helped to enhance the biodiversity of the area. Seedling of fruit, fodder, fuel wood and timber species have been distributed to encourage local community in income generating activities. Community forests are fenced to prevent livestock grazing and improve regeneration.
One of the major achievements has been single species research to landscape level research where a number of Ph.D and Master thesis have been produced. It has also organized several national and international workshops, training and seminars.
Endowment fund has been provided to support anti-poaching operation, mobile patrolling and to create awareness and to encourage involvement of local people in antipoaching activities.
Under natural resource conservation program, severely degraded forest lands within the Bardia - Katerniaghat forest corridor that maintains effective linkage between BNP and Katarniaghat Wildlife Sanctuary in India has been restored through local participation. This has ensured the safe movement of wild elephant, rhino and tigers between these two protected areas which is being monitored on a regular basis.
Research and monitoring program being its major focus, BCP regularly provides financial and scientific assistance to conduct doctoral, graduate and undergraduate studies. BCP also provides financial and technical supports to conserve and manage the only wild population of black buck in Khairapur, near Bardia District headquarters. BCP is actively involved in biodiversity research - mainly tigers, leopards, rhinos, ungulates, birds and vegetation.
Techniques for monitoring key wildlife species inside the national park have been developed and field tested and is operational.
To address the wildlife-people conflict, BCP has assisted the local communities to diversify their cropping pattern by planting unpalatable crops like Mentha and lemon grass and has been supporting the communities to establish processing plants to add value and increase their income. Besides this, electric fences are being constructed along high wildlife affected borders of the BNP.
BCP produces plant seedlings of multipurpose tree species every year for private and community plantations.
Natural resources conservation is the major program of SCP and has been monitoring wild animal populations like rhino, tiger and Barasingha (Swamp deer, Cervus duvauceli) in collaboration with SWR. SCP also supports the Reserve to carry out bio-diversity surveys in the Reserve. SCP provides financial support to the Reserve to improve wildlife habitat and has also made a provision for a relief fund to support victims of wildlife attack in the buffer zone areas. SCP has a forest nursery to produce seedlings of multipurpose tree species for private and community plantation.
SCP has been supporting university students (B. Sc and M. Sc) to conduct research in the reserve and its Buffer Zone area to address the data gap.
As an ex-situ conservation center, the zoo has also embarked on captive breeding of wildlife. Among others, the major species that have successfully bred in the zoo are deer, black buck, hippopotamus, tiger, wild buffalo, Simang and leopard cat.
Another focus is the animal management program. Different mammals, reptiles, fishes and birds are on exhibit at the Central Zoo. As a routine animal care and management practice, vaccination, parasitological examination and de-worming of animals in the zoo are being regularly carried out. A new “Animal Hospital” with additional facilities for the zoo animals has been constructed and is operational. To improve the living environment of the animals, a number of old enclosures have been demolished, some were renovated and new ones constructed. Exhibit enrichment materials are added on a regular basis.
To add new wildlife species, the Central Zoo has an animal exchange program with a number of zoos abroad. The zoo also collects representative species from within Nepal that are not exhibited at present.