Project Leader: SMCRF

Location: Jajarkot

Started on: 2013

With aims to explore the distribution status on red panda, a field based study was carried out in 2013 and confirmed red panda presence at Nayakwada VDCs in Jajarkot. The study was focused on forest area of Nayakwada Village Development Committee which falls under both community forest and national forests regime.

Based on river system of area, study was conducted in three main blocks namely Karichula-Bhalu Himal, Kote-Lamidada and Bhotegaddi-Jutae Lekha. Evidence based on sign (fecal pellet) and direct animal encounter, presence of red panda was conformed from Karichula, Thupa, Ghateja, Sagabari, Tumtum areas of Karichula-Bhalu Himal where as other possible sites of this block were Burase, Shalim Takuri, Belasuper, Jharauni, Kaldada. In Kote-Lamidada block, we recorded the presence of red panda from Binaetura, Kote Raw, Gobreguard areas and others possible areas were Kuthurae, Ninenae Thura, Khalatakuri, Nilapahar, Lamida.

Effort of survey team didn’t record any sign of red panda in Bhotegaddi-Lekha, however vegetation and habitat condition reflect positive aspect. During field survey three individuals where sighted in Karichjulai, Thupa and Kote raha. Red panda’s sign (fecal pellet) were encountered in elevation of 2900m to 3400 in study area. Higher sign encounter were recorded in Karihula-Bhalu Himal block than Kote-Lamidada block. A total of tree 14 tree species were recorded study sites of red panda habitat. Among them, habitat comprised that Abies spectabilis, and Betula utilis were dominated tree species together with thick patches of bamboo converges. Other associates three species were Rhododendron arboreum, Rhododendron barbatum, Rhododendron campanulatum, Tsuga dumosa, Sorbus cuspidata, ,Taxus wallichiana, Sorbus lanata, Sorbus microphylla. Similar to other areas, Red panda faced the problems of illegal hunting, killed by dogs (2 present case), snares, livestock pressure, fire, habitat destruction in study areas.