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Showing posts from July, 2012

A beautiful flower is only beautiful until it is plucked

Metamorphosis of life can be without an inch compared with the flower. The birth is equivalent to the budding of the flower. It is then so fragile and a small mishandle on part would bring large damage. So, goes the same for the child born. But it is a time for the tree to celebrate its budding. Then the linage is guaranteed. The bud would soon unfurl and exhibit very attractive flower which would attract many prospective bees and butterflies. "Whatever, the bees are attracted to the flower eager to help in pollination" The child born would go through and grow up to be the attractive teen at sweet sixteen. The life at this time is in its full bloom. Some are pink rose, others yellow sun flower and still some other are daffodils and few a water lilies. Whatever, the bees are attracted to the flower eager to help in pollination. The reproduction would then happen with copulation in case of human. Another line of generation is underway yet one cannot remain complacent. "

What is the National Butterfly of Bhutan?

Ludlow's Bhutan Glory (Ludlowii bhutanitis) to be designated as the national Butterfly What is the National Butterfly of Bhutan? We do not have one yet. But we may have one soon. The rediscovered Ludlow’s Bhutan Swallowtail (Bhutanitis ludlowi) may become the national butterfly of Bhutan. "The research and the filming of this project will be carried out in partnership" The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed this morning between Department of Forests and Park Services (DoFPS) under Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (MoAF) and Japanese researchers and film crew from NHK and The Butterfly Society of Japan will take up comprehensive research and filming on Bhutan’s Butterflies with special emphasis on Ludlow’s Bhutan Swallowtail. The research and the filming of this project will be carried out in partnership with Wildlife Conservation Division (WCD) and Ugyen Wangchuck Institute for Conservation and Environment (UWICE) as the national counterpart. “While w

Bringing our national tree into the limelight

Mission Tsendhen trees in Bhutan: Mapping crew at Lumitsawa Very little is known about our national tree the cypress, and even less is known when it comes to its distribution and phenotypical characteristics. The Tsenden Mapping initiative that is currently under full swing and being conducted by the Ugyen Wangchuck Institute for Conservation and Environment (UWICE) in Bumthang will help shed light on many such aspects of the cypress, as no such comprehensive mapping activity has been carried out in the past.     "The 5-member Tsenden mapping team from UWICE is out in the field visiting every cypress stand as well as significant single trees" The 5-member Tsenden mapping team from UWICE is out in the field visiting every cypress stand as well as significant single trees. They made head start on May 17 from Punakha Dzongkhag and will tentatively complete the surveying by the end of August. In their four months field tenure seeking out every cypress tree, they’ll be visiti

Geywaringa – the five Mountain Fortress of protecting Deity

Geywaringa - fortress of the five goddess sisters Buddhists believe that the mountains, vales, rivers, trees, rocky face and many of the nature formations are but the residence of certain spirits. Like the human who need roof over head to protect ourselves from shine and shower, the deities, demigod and other spirit do also need the place which they can call home. Putting harm to these so-called homes of the spirits by ways of disturbing their surrounding serenity, cutting down trees is considered to cause annoyance of such invisible owners and inflict sickness and even death. "Like we human do, the deities, demigod and other spirit do also need the place which they can call home" If the rock in Chasilakha in Bongo could withstand all the force of the bombs in an effort to demolish it and the rocky cliff at Wangsisina refuse to come down to rubble during the widening of Thimphu – Phuntsholing national highway, it merely is not a superstitions to believe that deiti

Gedu Karoke

You started early from Thimphu on your trip to Phuntsholing all alone in your cozy private car. You might have preferred a girl join you from Chuzom checkpoint, but unfortunate enough, there are none waving you, asking for the lift. Instead an old aged woman from Gedu has waited for whole morning but everyone denied the lift for her and you didn’t even care to look at her. This is Bhutan and all wear such attitude. What luxury is, if not shared with people in dire need? I don’t know if she can make it to home at Gedu. She has already left her daughter at Paro and if darkness fall, she has no one to put up for the night or don’t have enough money if there is any lodge around. You lit a cigarette as you board the car after entry in the checkpoint. Putting on rock English music, you rock all the way. Tsimakoti, no girl still waiting lift! "Your legs on brake, clutch and accelerator pains" By the time you are at Gedu specifically Jumja, you are already feeling the fatigue. Yo

Full circle life

From the time of birth, we are all born alone in this world and so must go alone after the death with exception to those twins born together. But although they are born together, they never die together. Yet, during the time of stay here in this world we all tend to succumb to the fact that we are always in the hunt for friends and other people to live with. Is it because we are scared to live alone? "Is it because we are scared to live alone?" From the time we are born, we live with our parents learning to live under their warm and cozy protection, yet once we are matured enough, we bear our own wings and fly away to live in our own world seeking our own destiny. It is here that one find the boredom suppressing you when you live all alone as bachelor. After my completion of my formal training, I lived as a bachelor for almost 2 years and it is at this time that I have confronted the life of complete freedom yet with boredom. The experience of those couple of single l

When looking isn't as easy as it looks

Man finally finds a single piece of magic worm   “If wishes are horses, every beggar would ride it,” and if cordyceps are wishes, every highlanders would collect it as much as they want. But sadly though, wishes merely remain wishes. Given the availability, every highland nomads vies for as much collection in every season as they can because every piece of cordyceps collected is a ‘midas’ collection when it can bring lots of money.  "Like economist puts it, all resources are limited and one day must exhaust" But like economist puts it, all resources are limited and one day must exhaust. This is exactly what seems to be happening even to the cordyceps in northern fringes of Laya gewog of the Gasa Dzongkhag as vindicated by Aum Om of Laya. “In five days of literal hunting for the worms, I could manage only 100 pieces," said Om “In five days of literal hunting for the worms, I could manage only 100 pieces,” unveiled Om. She added, “Last year I collected almost quadrup

Destination Lingzhi diverted to Laya

The settlements within the ice-capped mountain - the Laya village  This is the story of one Mr. John Wehrein from Hawaii in United States of America who was recently in Laya attending the Takin Festival 2011. It was the twist in his trip that landed him in the festival where tourist and foreigners alike were meant to be the main visitors. And he has no regrets having manipulated his travel itinerary for good. Neither he planned to be in Laya nor did anyone inform him. It was his sheer luck that he chanced upon such happening en route to Lingzhi. Mr. John was in Bhutan to do a research on Buddhist greatest Masters. Buddhism being our state religion with many eminent religious personalities, this is what encouraged him to come half the globe to the other side of the world. And this isn’t his first time in the Country and even to Laya and Lingzhi as well. "Setting all odds aside, he headed to Lingzhi oblivious and least expecting that he’d be in the right place at the right ti

Embracing ‘Green Infrastructure’ – Current Food for Thought

With ever ballooning of the urban populations at an estimated growth of 10 to 12 percent annually and demands ever increasing for green environment, urban forestry is a viable option worth contemplation from policy and decision makers at this juncture. This will also compensate the concrete jungles sprouting at unchecked rate, providing a respite for urban dwellers. The so-called ‘green infrastructure’ is what the town cries silently for today. "The so-called ‘green infrastructure’ is what the town cries silently for today" Urban forestry is generally defined as “the art, science and technology of managing trees and forest resources in and around urban community ecosystems for the psychological, sociological, economic and aesthetic benefits trees provide” (Helms, 1998). Many people also call urban forestry “Green Infrastructure”. Technically it is a specialized branch of forestry that deals with cultivation and management of trees for their present and potential contribution

The Taraythang experience of resolving Titan’s war.

The southern fringe of the Country is most prone and vulnerable region when it comes to Jumbo’s rampage of farmers’ field. It is not realistic to blame the marauders alone but the anthropologist action of the greediest of the species – the human being ourselves. Least concerned about other species existent on earth, our selfish actions have invited such unknown conflicts. In our quest to meet our increasing needs, we trespass into other’s territory. "when such belonging of the wild animals are offset by resettlement & human interferences, the conflict is only to be expected"   The ensuing human – giant conflicts can be attributed to the fact that most of the southern belt of Bhutan is resettled land which served as migratory route of elephants & other wild animals. However, when such belonging of the wild animals are offset by resettlement & human interferences, the conflict is only to be expected. Human being has least regard and understanding of the elephants,

Connection between Cordyceps and Compound bows in Laya

Cordyceps sinensis   commonly known as Chinese caterpillar is most precious gift nature can have for human mainly because this ‘summer-plant, winter-worm’ thing is highly prized for its medicinal properties.  In Bhutan, highland nomadic communities are the principal beneficiaries of such nature’s exceptional gift after government legalized its collection. While we cannot deny that the income from the sale of the cordyceps have paramount positive impacts on livelihoods of the highlanders, not every earner would spend the money judiciously. "Nomadic communities are the principal beneficiaries of such nature’s exceptional gift" As grapevine goes, more money means luxurious life. Some rich nomads are known to own two to three houses. This can be adduced from the number of new houses that have sprouted in the village. Recent polygamous habits among the nomadic men can also be linked to accumulation of more wealth from the cordyceps. Hence, men in Laya build new house for every n

Festival on the rooftop of the world dedicating to Bhutan’s exotic National Animal

The journey through the roughest of the nature can get was worth given the grandeur of the Takin Festival 2011. The carnival held at Lunguthang, a suitable plateau above Laya village at an altitude of 3800 metre above sea level was the highest any such festival could go. Nonetheless, the festival harnessed huge success, both from service provider and client’s perspectives. "The chill of the thin Lunguthang mountain air didn’t dissuade the eager spectators of the festival" The chill of the thin Lunguthang mountain air didn’t dissuade the eager government officials, private representatives, local communities and foreigners alike from indulging themselves in the gala festivity. Some have walked more than a week to reach the carnival ground. They’ve traversed conquering mountains and vales albeit aggravation by the harsh and merciless summer weather. But propelled by the burning desire to witness the splendor of the festival, they’ve inched to the Lunguthang. The members of the

The salient features of Takin festival

The first ever festival held at Lunguthang in Laya by Jigme Dorji National Park (JDNP) was rightly dedicated to honour the exotic and elusive national animal of Bhutan – Takin zoologically known as burdocas taxicolor. It is devot­ed to the Takin because the presence of healthy populations of this species in the country epitomizes Bhutan’s fervent support and commitment towards nature conservation. The legend says that this unique national animal of Bhutan is the noble creation of Lama Drukpa Kuenley (divine Madman) where he stuck the head of a goat into the body of a cow. The appearances of the animal adequately adduce the legends. The animal is also known to exist very rarely in the World and hence it makes valid to hold them in hearts. "The appearances of the animal adequately adduce the legend that it was created by Lam Drukpa Kuenley miraculously"  Drying hides when sun shine - local puts up commodities for sale While the visitors assessed the festival limiting their

Status on prospect of tea and rubber development in southern fringes

  In an efforts of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (MoAF) to explore optimal avenues to enable farmers generate cash income, which will have direct bearing on poverty reduction – the overarching theme of the current Five year plan – the Ministry is exploring prospect of tea estate and rubber development in the southern fringes of the Country. Accordingly, the letter of intent issued by the Ministry and within the Terms of Reference provided by Laxey Investments, members from MoAF, Druk Holdings & Investment (DHI) and Goodricke Group Limited supported by officials and members of local community conducted a feasibility study. The study was currently confined to the areas within the Bhutanese region of Samdrup Jongkhar Dzongkhag. Yesterday, the team presented their pre-feasibility report to the officials of the MoAF chaired by His Excellency (Dr.) Pema Gyamtsho. The team presented their findings from the study visit they’ve made to the areas such as Khaurang,Golanti, Samra

Fire Fighters introduced to basic fire behavior and fire combating techniques

The forest fire volunteers with the professor   Fire is one of the essential elements of sustenance of life on earth besides soil, water and air. But it is also considered as one of major annihilator of life on earth. Fire is universally known to be a good servant but a bad master. And this ‘bad master’ going wild and obliterating the Country’s pristine forests and natural resources is of national concern. "Fire is a ‘bad master’ going wild and obliterating the Country’s pristine forests and natural resources is of national concern" There is need to seriously delve into the sad fact that more than 31,132 acres of forests were lost to wild fire in the last three years and the Department of Forests and Park Services (DoFPS) is exactly doing that. In doing so, the 68 volunteers from multiple background such as Desung, Business Community, Corporations, Government Institutions, Projects and many other private individuals who have committed their service for forest fire fight

Coping with timber shortage

In the recent years, Bhutan has witnessed a construction boom with buildings sprouting everywhere. And the integral component of every construction is the timber. This has resulted in acute shortage of timber resources in the Country. This is no joke going by the figure that there is currently a gap of 1.84 million cft of timber supply and demand.   The shortage is further vindicated during the timber allotment done by Natural Resources Development Corporation (NRDCL) for the month of May 2011. The hall was jam-packed with 92 bidders from across the Country who includes saw-millers, proprietors of furniture house and other wood-based industries, from as far as extreme east. Everyone was vying for the small pie from the 95,676.81 cft of timbers for allotment. "Everyone was vying for the small pie from the 95,676.81 cft of timbers for allotment" The conference room represented sort of fish market with every people trying to bulldoze their message across in their conversation. T

Seminar on Community Forests for Poverty reduction

Mr. Karma Dukpa, Director of DoFPS with the participants The Community Forests (CFs) Programme of the Department of Forests and Park Services (DoFPS) has potential for contributing towards national efforts of poverty reduction. This is because, such programme besides encouraging participatory management of forests and natural resources provides avenues for deriving economic benefits. Such economic benefits can have direct bearing on bringing down poverty incidences. With its reach currently confined to rural areas, it is also in sync with the poverty which is predominantly a rural phenomenon. However, after having almost 305 Community Forests incepted in Bhutan involving 35,993 rural households covering forest area of 40,329 hectares, the need was felt to timely assess its impact on poverty reduction. Towards this, the Chief Forestry Officers (CFOs) of field divisions, Park Managers (PMs) and Dzongkhag Forestry Officers (DzFOs) gathered at Bumthang attending “Seminar on Comm