Kathmandu Forestry College

Kathmandu, Nepal

Kathmandu Forestry College

Kathmandu, Nepal
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Shrestha U.B.,University of Southern Queensland | Dhital K.R.,Kathmandu Forestry College | Gautam A.P.,Kathmandu Forestry College
ORYX | Year: 2017

Products obtained from forests or other natural environments play a crucial role in sustaining the livelihoods of poor people in developing countries through income generation and the creation of employment opportunities. Although studies have been carried out to evaluate the dependence of local livelihoods on environmental products, quantify the linkage between poverty and biodiversity, and assess the impacts of resource depletion on household economics, most have been focused geographically on the tropics. Our study was conducted in the mountain village of Jumla, Nepal, to quantify the economic contribution of Chinese caterpillar fungus Ophiocordyceps sinensis (yarsagumba) to local households. Income from yarsagumba accounted for up to 65% of the total household cash income, on average, and its contribution was highest in the poorest households. It contributed to reducing income inequality by 38%, and the income was utilized to purchase food and clothes, celebrate festivals, pay for medical treatment and children's education, and for savings. There was a mean annual decline of 25 pieces in the per capita harvest of yarsagumba during 2010–2014. However, the decline had no adverse impact on household income, as the price increased. Copyright © Fauna & Flora International 2017

Dhungana R.,Prince of Songkla University | Savini T.,King Mongkut's University of Technology Bangkok | Karki J.B.,Kathmandu Forestry College | Lamichhane B.R.,Biodiversity Conservation Center | Bumrungsri S.,Prince of Songkla University
ORYX | Year: 2017

Human–tiger conflict arises when tigers Panthera tigris attack people or their livestock, and poses a significant threat to both tigers and people. To gain a greater understanding of such conflict we examined spatio-temporal patterns, correlates, causes and contexts of conflict in Chitwan National Park, Nepal, and its buffer zone, during 2007–2014. Data, mostly from compensation applications, were collected from the Park office. Fifty-four human casualties (32 fatalities, 22 injuries) and 351 incidents of livestock depredation were recorded, clustered in defined areas, with 75.9% of human casualties occurring in the buffer zone and 66.7% within 1 km of the Park boundary. A linear model indicated there was a significant increase in human casualties during 2007–2014. Livestock were killed in proportion to their relative availability, with goats suffering the highest depredation (55%). There was a positive correlation between livestock depredation and National Park frontage (the length of Village Development Committee/municipality boundary abutting the National Park), but not human population, livestock population, forest area in the buffer zone, rainfall or temperature. There was no relationship between tiger attacks on people and any of the correlates examined. Wild prey density was not correlated with conflict. Of the tigers removed because of conflict, 73.3% were male. The majority of attacks on people occurred during accidental meetings (77.8%), mostly while people were collecting fodder or fuelwood (53.7%), and almost half (48.2%) occurred in the buffer zone forests. We recommend the use of the conflict map developed here in the prioritization of preventive measures, and that strategies to reduce conflict should include zoning enforcement, improvement of livestock husbandry, participatory tiger monitoring, an insurance scheme, and community awareness. Copyright © Fauna & Flora International 2017

Paudel S.,Kathmandu Forestry College | Paudel S.,Himalaya | Pal P.,Himalaya | Cove M.V.,North Carolina State University | And 3 more authors.
Endangered Species Research | Year: 2016

Conservation of the last remaining Ganges River dolphins Platanista gangetica gangetica in Nepal will require robust population estimates and better information on suitable habitat characteristics. To gain a better understanding of these parameters, we conducted boatbased surveys in the 3 major river systems (Karnali, Sapta Koshi, and Narayani) of Nepal. We recorded covariates at high spatial resolution and utilized these data to inform occurrence and abundance models. We allowed for detection bias by applying occupancy and N-mixture models that account for imperfect and heterogeneous detection. Occupancy results indicate that dolphin site use varies among the different river systems, across 2 seasons, and increases with river depth. River effects received nearly 100% of the model support and had the strongest influence on dolphin occurrence and abundance. The seasonal influence on dolphin occurrence in the systems (Σωi = 0.997) revealed that occupancy probabilities were heightened during the pre-monsoon season. Deep pool habitat was also identified as a predictor of dolphin habitat use, which accounted for 41.02% of all dolphin sightings occurring in this habitat. Although estimates vary depending on season, we estimate that there are between 37 and 42 (95% CI: 28 to 52) Ganges River dolphins distributed in the rivers of Nepal. Results suggest that seasonality and each specific river affect dolphins and their habitat in Nepal; we strongly recommend site and season-specific conservation actions. Further research on the integration of additional and alternative abundance techniques, behavioral studies, and pursuit of a conservation genetics approach are all important steps in the management of this endangered species. © The authors 2015.

Dhungana R.,Prince of Songkla University | Savini T.,King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi | Karki J.B.,Kathmandu Forestry College | Bumrungsri S.,Prince of Songkla University
Tropical Conservation Science | Year: 2016

Human-tiger conflict is one of the most critical issues in tiger conservation, requiring a focus on effective mitigation measures. We assessed the mitigation measures used between 2007 and 2014 in Chitwan National Park (CNP) and its buffer zone, which include: compensation payments made to human victims or their families, compensation for livestock loss through depredation, and the removal of tigers involved in conflicts. The data collected from the offices of CNP and the Buffer Zone Management Committee were triangulated during questionnaire surveys (n=83) and key informant interviews (n=13). A total compensation of US$ 93,618 ($11,702.3 per year) was paid for tiger attacks during the eight-year period. Of this, the majority (65%) was in payment for human killings, followed by payment for livestock depredations (29.3%) and for human injuries (5.7%). The payments on average covered 80.7% of medical expenses of injured persons, and 61.7% of the monetary value of killed livestock. Goats had the highest proportion of payments (43.5%) for livestock. A linear model suggested there was an increasing trend in total annual payments from $2,000 in 2007 to $21,536 in 2014, a jump of 976%. A total of 15 tigers were removed from the wild for conflict reasons: 11 by authorities, and four killed by local people in retaliation. Thirteen tigers were removed from the buffer zone alone. The majority of the removed tigers were adults (n=9) and healthy (n=9). Most (n=12) of the removed tigers were killed, or died after removal, indicating greater impacts of tiger-removal in CNP. We suggest that in order to encourage community engagement, compensation payments be paid quickly, an insurance scheme in the buffer zone be promoted, live-removed tigers be better managed, including radio-tracking of wild released individuals, and awareness programs be targeted at affected communities. © 2016, Mongaby.com e-journal. All rights reserved.

Choudhary D.,International Center for Integrated Mountain Development | Pandit B.H.,Kathmandu Forestry College | Kala S.P.,Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal University | Todaria N.P.,Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal University | And 2 more authors.
Society and Natural Resources | Year: 2014

This article highlights the results of an action research to upgrade mountain farmers of bay leaf (Cinnamomum tamala Nees and Eberm) in Udayapur district of Nepal. Farmers received low prices, lacked market information, capacities, and institutional mechanisms, and were exploited by traders. To address these constraints, three independent but interlinked pro-poor value chain (VC) upgrading strategies comprising VC coordination upgrading and horizontal and vertical contractualization were implemented. Information was collected from focus-group discussions with collectors, traders, and facilitators, and a questionnaire was used to collect pre- and postintervention data (n = 120). VC upgrading strategies improved harvesting practices, increased farmers’ bargaining power, and led to a threefold increase in price, which increased household incomes. Results demonstrated improved terms of participation of farmers and a general increase in market price of bay leaf in Udayapur. The study approach can be up scaled to reduce poverty from high value products. © 2014, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

McDougall C.,Wageningen University | Jiggins J.,Wageningen University | Pandit B.H.,Kathmandu Forestry College | Thapa Magar Rana S.K.,CARE Nepal | Leeuwis C.,Wageningen University
Society and Natural Resources | Year: 2013

Despite recognition of forests' roles in rural livelihoods, there has been relatively little empirical exploration of community forestry's contribution to poverty alleviation. Similarly, there has been little study of the interaction of social learning-based approaches to forest governance with poverty alleviation. This article draws on 6 years of research on community forestry in Nepal to explore whether, and how, adaptive collaborative forest governance influences the financial and forest assets of women and the poor. The study includes impacts on income generation, access to micro-credit, and employment. The findings indicate that the financial and forest assets of both women and the poor-and especially poor women-increased as a result of adaptive collaborative forest governance. They also suggest a strong role for social learning in poverty alleviation. The article concludes by considering whether poverty alleviation might usefully be reconceptualized as a power-related transformation process. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Bista R.,Kathmandu Forestry College | Aryal A.,Massey University
Zoology and Ecology | Year: 2013

The Asiatic black bear Ursus thibetanus is an omnivore that occurs throughout the mid-hill region of Nepal. Globally, it is listed as vulnerable; in southern Asia it is considered threatened and in Nepal it is identified as endangered. This study was conducted to explore its habitat use and distribution in the southeast (Bhujung sector) of the Annapurna Conservation Area (ACA). Most of black bear signs in the study area were recorded at the elevation ranging from 1900 to 3100 m. The black bear was mainly recorded in the forest habitat with 20-30° slope and 50-75% crown cover. A total of 86 bear signs were recorded in the study area and the density of bear signs was estimated at 0.45 signs/km2. The bear was distributed in Schima wallichi, Quercus spp. forest with Arundinaria spp. and Dendrocalamus spp. The study recorded 1.3 hectares crops damaged/raided by black bears. Black bear habitats were found to be under the pressure of different human activities such as forest product collection, grazing and poaching. The current study recommends extending further research on the species throughout the ACA region, implementing mitigation measures and conducting awareness raising activities to reduce the human-bear conflict. It is also recommended that a participatory action plan for the black bear conservation at a local level should be developed and implemented. Copyright © 2013 Nature Research Centre.

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