Project Leader: Sanjan Bahadur Thapa

Location: Lower Karnali River region

Funding Agency: The UK Government through Darwin Initiative

WWF Nepal in partnership with WWF UK, Small Mammals Conservation and Research Foundation (SMCRF) and three grassroots level CSOs has been implementing activities under this project for the duration of 2023-2026. The role of SMCRF is to conduct research elements and prepare an otter conservation action plan. One of the main goals of this partnership project is to endorse otter conservation action plan adopted by all relevant stakeholders underpinned by robust scientific research and evidence-based approaches by 2025. SMCRF will be conducting a detailed baseline and end line survey on otters in the Lower Karnali River, publishing and disseminating otter identification manual and monitoring protocol, train 20 local communities to use the identification manual and monitoring protocol and conducting pre and post project threat assessments. For the otter action plan, 13 community consultations at 13 sites in seven provinces will be conducted, a draft of the action plan will be prepared, reviewed, revised and shared through the sharing workshops and finally endorsed by DNPWC.