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White-bellied heron (Ardea insignis)

Mohamed bin Zayed Species project number 172515064

Conservation of Critically Endangered White-Bellied Heron (Ardea insignis) and its Habitat in Phuna tshangchu Valley, Bhutan

Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation (Project No. 172515064) - White-bellied heron - Awarded $7,100 on June 02, 2017

White-bellied heron is a critically endangered bird species (Birdlife International 2013). WBH generally nest and fed along the Puna-tshangchu, including the Mochu, Phochu, Kamechu, and its tributaries (RSPN, 2011). The basin has emerged to be the permanent WBH habitat where the bird relies upon rivers and its tributaries as its sole source of food. Now, with Puna-tshangchu Hydro-power Project activities at its height and other developmental activities, habitat destruction and fragmentation are inevitable. Besides, quality of the river, which supports the abundance of fishes and other macro-invertebrates that herons feed upon are critical to the bird’s survival. Therefore, there is a dire need to conduct a conservation study on this bird and the objectives of the study are to: 1. Determine current habitat status, the species composition, structure and diversity of forests along white-bellied heron habitat. 2. Survey the potential conservation threats contributing for larger impact on the habitat and population of heron in the study area. 3. Assess attitudes of local communities towards the conservation of bird, create conservation awareness and educate the local communities for the long term survival of the white-bellied heron.

Project 172515064 location - Bhutan, Asia