|Categories||Conflict, People, Primates|
|Date||14 Jul 2015|
Assamese macaque (Macaca assamensis) is the protected primate distributed in fragmented patches in the mid hills of Nepal. It is facing survival threats due to habitat alteration and loss, and conflicts with local people. The less studied ‘Nepal population’ of Assamese macaque has been considered distinct and likely endemic to Nepal by Conservation Assessment and Management Plan (CAMP, 2003) of South Asian Primates.
Budhigandaki Hydroelectric Project (BGHEP), a dam based high priority project of Government of Nepal inundates the habitat of Assamese macaque in some villages of Gorkha and Dhading districts. When the habitat is degraded and migratory route is cut off, the isolated troops Assamese macaque may suffer from inbreeding problem and may also become the pest for farmers reducing the survival chances for remaining population. This research project aims to:
The present population status and distribution of Assamese macaque in the catchment area of BGHEP will be censused and such statistical data will be important in its long-term management. The potential habitats and corridors linking them will be explored and the habitat management will be done with the active participation of the local people.
The causes of conflicts between human and Assamese macaques in catchments of BGHEP will be identified and mitigating measures will be taken. Mass education by training on wildlife conservation and environmental awareness will be achieved. Communities will be made aware about the need of conservation of the macaque, alternative methods of farming and guarding the crops to reduce the conflict with macaque, improvements in livelihood etc. Community based sustainable conservation practices will be implemented by establishing the local conservation groups.
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