Kharungla to be developed as birding destination

Works are underway to make Kharungla in Trashigang a birding destination. Kharungla is located between Khaling and Wamrong in Trashigang. The area is home to more than 250 species of birds and some endangered animals.  The Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources has also approved Kharungla as a protected key biodiversity area in 2023.

More than 250 species of birds including three species of Tragopan can be seen in Kharungla.

According to forestry officials, Kharungla is the only area in the country where three species of Tragopan birds can be spotted together. So, Kharungla mountain is also known as Pheasant Mountain.

Besides birds, other endangered animal species like Red Panda and Tiger are found in Kharungla forest.

In an effort to make the area a birding destination, the Trashigang Forest Division and the Wamrong Dungkhag are constructing cafeterias and toilet along the road and creating awareness about bird conservation.

“To make a birding trail, we went around Kharungla area and assessed. But we realised that we do not need a separate trail. Birds can be seen from anywhere if there is a bird. So, at an initial stage, we are focusing on developing roadside amenities such as signboards and creating awareness in the local community,” said Tashi Tenzin, Wamrong Dungpa.

The dungkhag has also proposed for establishment of homestays in Khaling to provide lodging facilities.

“Yonphula domestic airport is located nearby. So, we are taking advantage of it.  Tourists can come here and watch birds. This will benefit our local community by making some income. We are at the initial period and if it goes well, we will plan accordingly,” said Tashi Tenzin, Wamrong Dungpa.

Although there is no record of how many tourists visited the site, a few tourists have already started visiting the site this year.

The Trashigang Forest Division in collaboration with the Wamrong Dungkhag is initiating the construction works.

The Global Environment Facility and the government are supporting the project worth over five-million-ngultrum.

Kharungla has an area of 11 square kilometres, which is more than 2,700 acres.

Sonam Darjay, Trashigang

Edited by Tshering Zam 

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