heels of last year's successful World Wetlands Day
celebration, Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) promoted World
Wetlands Day 2006 celebration, including Taudaha Jamboree.
actions aimed at raising awareness of wetland values and
benefits in general and Ramsar Convention in particular,
Friends of the Bagmati in partnership with World Wildlife
Fund-Nepal (www.wwfnepal.org), Department of National Park &
Wildlife Conservation (www.dnpwc.gov.np), Sustainable
Tourism Network (www.welcomenepal.com/stn) and other
partners organized various events during this celebration.
cleaning up program at Taudaha Lake on 21st January,
initiated by Taudaha Youth Club (TYS), was organized as a
pre-event of 2nd Taudaha Jamboree and participated in by the
members of implementing partners of various activities
during the celebration. Participants collected rubbish and
removed some invasive weeds at the shoreline of Taudaha
this celebration interactions and features about wetlands of
Nepal were broadcast through various FM Radio stations
including Radio Sagarmatha 102.4 FM (www.radiosagarmatha.org),
co-organizer of celebration events. The main attraction of
this celebration was Taudaha Jamboree on 28th January that
included activities such as Cycle Rally, Bird Watching,
Nature Hike Race, Mithila Art, Exhibitions and Green Map for
Rally: The day began with a Cycle Rally joined in by
more than 50 cyclists wearing T-Shirts with message to
conserve ponds of Kathmandu Valley and an implementing
partner being Nepal Cycling Club (NCC). The rally
inaugurated by Mr. Subash Nirola, Director, NTB started from
Dhasharath Stadium, Tripureshwor and ended at Taudaha after
covering approximately 10 Kilometers.
joined other participants of the Jamboree at Taudaha and
enjoyed the celebration including fun filled and adventure
activities like Bird Watching and Nature Hike Race.
Hike Race: The Wildlife Conservation Nepal (WCN) (www.wcn.org.np)
conducted the race and organized various activities like
Mithila Art, On-the-Spot Art Competition and Green Map for
The Hike Race
was one of the main attractions of the Jamboree. Hundred and
fifty participants raced against each other. The hike was
organized on Boson Danda, a hill overlooking Taudaha Pond.
On reaching the peak, the hikers were felicitated and their
pictures taken against the backdrop of the Taudaha Pond. It
was Mr. Dipendra who stood first in the race by completing
the hike in 39 minutes.
This event was
conducted to promote Taudaha vicinity as a good nature hike
route in order to preserve the entire area in its natural
form. Taudaha is surrounded by forested hills, which could
be used as a perfect getaway for a peaceful hike, just
within a few minutes drive from Kathmandu city.
Art: On the Spot Mithila Art Workshop was conducted in
order to orient the participants about Mithila Art. They
were also provided information about this art’s history and
significance in our Nepali culture. Participants portrayed
Taudaha in different aspects in the canvas.
Map: WCN also facilitated eight School Students of
Kathmandu Valley to make green maps from Balkhu to Taudaha.
The map was an interpretation of young students about the
state of trails leading to the wetland. Two maps were made
on the occasion. The first map pointed out polluted spots,
green zones while the second made recommendations to achieve
environmental objectives. These maps are student friendly
and do play a significant role in identifying the major
environmental impacts in the area.
Art Competition: Eight students from the local schools
of Taudaha, Bungamati and Khokana participated in the On the
Spot Art Competition. The students painted pictures of
wetlands on the theme “In The Face Of Poverty… Wetlands Are
Lifelines”. Norbu Sherpa of Shree Yuba Prativa HS School of
Khokana came first in the event while Anil Tamang and Rajesh
Nagarkoti of Shree Yuba Prativa HS School, Khokana and
Cardinal International. (Boarding) School of Pharping came
second and third respectively. The winners were awarded by
DNPWC during a ceremony organized at NTB on 2nd Feb.
2006,World Wetlands Day.
Watching: While Bird Watching and Exhibitions were
co-organized by Bird Conservation Nepal (www.birdlifenepal.org)
and TYC, implementing partners of the Jamboree since its
program was organized in order to give an opportunity to the
participants to become familiar with the birds in and around
Taudaha Pond. The professional bird watching experts
accompanied the participants.
The photographs, artworks and handicrafts were on display at
the exhibition. They were sold so as to raise funds for
conservation activities at local level.
prizes were offered to the participants of the Jamboree. The
Buddha Air P. Ltd., Dwarika’s Hotel, Club Himalaya, The Last
Resort P. Ltd., Everest Net P. Ltd. and Mountain Tea Trader
sponsored the prizes while Gairidhara Khaja Ghar, Nebico P.
Ltd. and United Marketing Inc. sponsored logistics and food.
government and non-governmental organization’s
representatives, tourism entrepreneurs, tourists, wetland
experts, ornithologists, volunteers and general public
attended the events. More than four hundred people attended
on Ponds of Kathmandu Valley
was opened by welcome address by Mr. Siba Bhakta Rajbhandary,
Vice-President of the Friends of the Bagmati and an
inaugural speech by 12 years old Master Dipesh Nepal from
the inaugural speech Mr. Bhairab Risal, senior journalist at
the Nepal Forum of Environmental Journalists (NEFEJ)
delivered keynote speech while local conservation activists
Mr. Purusottham Budhathoki and Mr. Binod Khadka from Taudaha
and Nagdaha area respectively shared their success stories
regarding conservation of these important ponds of Kathmandu
Valley. Mr. Risal stressed on the need to carry development
activities in line with proper management of ponds.
was divided into two sessions: 1. Status & Values & 2.
Awareness & Conservation. Mr. Bhushan Tuladhar, Executive
Director, Environment and Public Health Organization (ENPHO)
moderated the first session while Mrs. Renchin Yonjan,
Social Architect moderated the awareness and conservation
In the first
session, Dr. Bishnu Bhandari, President, Forum for Ecosystem
Management (FEM) made a presentation on ‘Wetlands and
Culture’ and Mr. Subash Nirola, Director, Nepal Tourism
Board made a presentation on ‘Tourism Values of Ponds of
Kathmandu Valley’ while Ms. Ishana Thapa, Program Officer at
BCN made a presentation on ‘Status of Avifauna of Kathmandu
nature and culture are blended and complementary to each
other, Dr. Bhandari focused on active, well-informed and
responsible participation of relevant stakeholders for a
successful conservation activity. Mr. Nirola during his
presentation stressed on the role of all stakeholders ‘to
start with a Pond (Pokhari) Management Plan of Rani Pokhari,
Kamal Pokhari and Nag Pokhari and continue till we all
achieve the final goals in making all existing and potential
ponds of Kathmandu Valley a potential tourist attraction.’
The participants, for including comprehensive information
about avifauna of wetlands of Nepal in general and Taudaha
in particular, appreciated the presentation made by Ms.
the awareness and conservation session were Mr. B.K. Uprety,
Under Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Science and
Technology (MoEST) on ‘Wetlands Conservation and Education,’
Mr. Bhupendra Basnet, General secretary, Nepal Forum of
Environmental Journalists (NEFEJ) on ‘Role of Press and
Media in Conservation of Ponds’ and Mr. Prakash Amatya on
‘Linkages between Rain Water Harvesting and Conservation of
stressed on the need to focus on education if we want
conservation to last for centuries. Presenting in the same
session Mr. Amatya said ‘Even Melamchi may not be the answer
to our water shortage problem, we need to look for cost
effective alternatives – and that can be Rain Water
Harvesting’. While Mr. Basnet highlighting the role of press
and media in conservation of ponds called upon all media
people to take their responsibility in this regard.
Shrestha Pradhan from WWF Nepal Program and Mr. Jhamak B.
Karki at DNPWC facilitated the overall organization and
management of the workshop.
people from colleges, government and non-governmental
organization’s representatives, tourism entrepreneurs,
wetland experts, ornithologists, media/press participated in
The Roots and
Shoots Nepal and Urban Environment Management Society (UEMS)
were also the co-organizers of all the events during
Wetlands Day celebration. Their support during the program
through volunteer mobilization was crucial.
this program contributed to the promotion of ponds of
Kathmandu Valley in general and Taudaha Lake as a tourism
destination in particular. We are very thankful to all those
who helped to make this program a great success.
to this workshop, IUCN Nepal, DNPWC and WWF Nepal organized
a national program to commemorate the Day. During the
program, Chief Guest and Secretary of the Ministry of
Forests and Soil Conservation Dr. Swoyambhu Man Amatya
launched wetlands poster and a book titled An Inventory and
Assessment of Invasive Alien Plant Species of Nepal (IUCN
Nepal) and Fact Sheet of High Altitude Wetlands of Nepal (WWF