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More Black Necked Cranes in Bumthang

With migration time over, the 34 cranes are likely to remain in the district

Conservation: With 34 black-necked cranes flying into Bumthang, 2014 recorded the highest number of cranes the dzongkhag saw in over two decades.

Besides the flock of 22 that arrived in Gyetsa, Chumey last month, Tang saw four cranes while eight cranes are spotted in Dramphel, Chokhortoe.

According to the division forest office (DFO), the number of cranes visiting Bumthang doubled last year. Earlier only around 10-15 cranes flew in and at times a year or two went by without people spotting even one.

“The last time we saw a flock of 15-16 at Chokhortoe was in the 90s,” Kharsat tshogpa, Wangchuk said. The flock however disappeared after two weeks, he said.

“It doesn’t stay in Kharsat and Thangbi area for long because of lack of feeding area and attacks from dogs,” Wangchuk said, adding unlike before the loss of farmland to construction has crowded out the crane feeding grounds.

It was learnt from Chokhortoe tshogpa Sonam Jamtsho that the six cranes that disappeared from Thangbi has migrated to Chokhortoe. “While, six were spotted in Dramphel, a couple is also roosting in Nasphel,” Sonam Jamtsho said.

Wangchuk centennial national park, chief forest officer Tshering Dhendup also confirmed six cranes roosting in Ngalagang in Chokhortoe. “Three pairs of cranes were spotted in Ngalagang but did not share the information because it was presumed to be on transit route,” he said.

Gewog forest ranger, Tsheten Wangchuk said that there were no additional arrivals in Chumey after 22 visitors landing. “The flock is still disturbed at night by predators mostly stray dogs,” Tsheten Wangchuk said.

With the migration time over, the number of cranes in Bumthang is likely to remain at 34.

By Tempa Wangdi, Bumthang

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