Global Change & the Himalayas
Himalayas are not isolated when it comes to getting exposed to impacts of globalization and human induced changes mostly the climate change. ABC-Nepal focuses on research into better understanding and reporting the status and impacts of these global changes in 6 'J' namely: Janata, Jalbyau, Jamin, Jungle, Janawor and jadibuti (i.e. people, Climate,Land,Forest,Wildlife and Important Plants) .
Our recent project explored the effect of climate change on the distribution and niche dynamics of Rhododendron and Arisema spp. along an elevation gradient from 2400–4100m. in the Central Himalayan region, Manang, Nepal
Using stratified random sampling to collect the data, adiabatic lapse rate for temperature gradient construction and generalised linear model for analysis, the study found that both herbaceous and woody species show different temperature niches and distributional responses. Our results shows that the younger Rhododendrons are shifting towards higher elevations compared to their respective adult life stage. This shows that global warming has led to ecological change in the Himalayas with effects such as shift in species range, that might have further consequence on the distribution and overall ecosystem of the area. Further research on different species at larger scale would help us to reach a more solid conclusion that would help conservation managers and planners to formulate and implement appropriate decisions.
Research and Conservation of Wildlife
Research on Swamp Francolin (Francolinus gularis) was carried out in Suklaphanta Wildlife Reserve. The Research was supported by Ivan Scott, member of World Pheasant Association and Biodiversity Conservation Society(BIOCOS) Nepal.
Swamp francolin is endemic to Indian sub-continent and listed as a globally threatned bird by IUCN.The bird is suspected to be in rapid decline owing to the decline in the extent and quality of its habitat. It has gone extinct from Chitwan National Park and Bardia National Park and its only population exists in Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve and Suklaphanta Wildlife Reserve.
The research found a total of 90 pairs of this bird in SWR using the call count method. Further research on its habitat, home range, impacts of grassland fire and climate change is recommended.