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With its auspicious goal to produce competent and efficient human resource that can be instrumental in conservation and management of biodiversity, environment and natural resources and  development of rural communities, the IOF-PC, with the help of its enthusiastic teaching faculty and spirited staff, has always endeavored to ameliorate its academic environment and administer well designed educational programs that can address the current needs of the country  and the globe in forestry and allied fields. It is committed to satisfying student's quest for knowledge and pragmatic skills that will make all the difference in their professional career. The IOF-PC is currently running the following academic programs:

  1. Master of Science in Forestry
  2. Master of Science in Natural Resource Management and Rural Development (NRMRD)
  3. Master of Science in Watershed Management (WM)
  4. Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Forestry

Beside regular academic programs, it also conducts short-term national and international training and workshops in Forestry and allied subjects.

Abstracts of M.Sc. Thesis Research 2016 (2072 BS)

Role of Agroforestry in Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation in the Mid-hill region of Nepal

 (A Case Study from Phedikhola VDC of Syangja District, Nepal)
Amar Bahadur Parajuli

Climate change (CC) impact is becoming more severe in developing countries like Nepal because of their low adaptive capacity. The direct impact of CC has been more visible on agriculture production and farm income which has hard hit the livelihood of farmers and small holders. Agroforestry practices offer a unique opportunity to address CC impacts while securing livelihoods of the rural communities. Therefore, the study was carried out to assess and analyze the role of agroforestry practices in CC mitigation and adaptation based on intensive field study in one ward of Phedikhola Village Development Committee in Syangja district of Nepal. Both biophysical and socioeconomic variables were analyzed while gathering data. Socioeconomic data were collected through household survey, key informant interviews, focus groups discussion. Similarly, biophysical data such as soil carbon and plant biomass were collected from the farm land to study the carbon stock. Temperature and rainfall data were collected through a secondary source to support the substantive examinations. Date were analyzed using descriptive (mean, percentage) and inferential statistics (such as ANOVA). The study found that majority of people were aware about climatic threats and found adopted different adaptation strategies, including agroforestry practices. Local communities were adopting nine different types of agroforestry practices under three agroforestry systems, namely Silvopasture, Agrisilviculture and Agrihorticulture.  Agroforestry practices had increased coping capacities of the local communities during the climatic shocks and stresses, such as landslides, droughts and floods. Likewise, it also contributed to increase household income and food insecurity. Furthermore, total carbon stock assessment on three agroforestry system revealed that silvopasture (32.41 t/ha) has highest carbon stock followed by Agrisilviculture (28.58 t/ha) and Agrohorticulture (30.71 t/ha). The study shows that agroforestry practices had increased resiliency of both local communities and ecosystem to fight climatic shocks and stresses. Furthermore, it has also contributed towards reducing global greenhouse gas emission through carbon sequestration and generating fund from carbon trade. It is suggested that Agrihorticulture practice should be emphasized because of its potentiality to sink relatively more carbon and to provide diverse income and services to the rural people to cope with adverse CC impacts.

Key words:  Climatic shocks, farm diversification, carbon stock, resiliency


Analysis of Carbon Stocks in Soil and Vegetation of Hill Sal Forests

(A Case Study from Two Community Forests of Parbat District, Nepal)
 Balram Prasad Singh

Estimation of total biomass and soil carbon sequestered in any forest is very important as it gives ecological and economic benefits to the local people. The study was carried out in the forest of Khotegaira CF Beulibas-1,2 and Muralibas CF Huwash-1 of Parbat district. Simple random sampling method was used for assessing biomass. Mesurement of tree, sapling, grass/ herbs, litter and soil samples were carried out following the guideline developed by ANSAB, FECOFUN,ICIMOD and NORAD (2010). Allometric models developed were used to estimate above ground tree biomass and sapling biomass. Ratio of oven dry to fresh weight of herbs, grass and litter was used to calculate dry biomass of the grass, herbs and litter. Traditional method of root-shoot ratio was used to estimate below- ground biomass. The biomass stock was converted into carbon stock after the multiplication by IPPC default carbon fraction of 0.47. Walkey- Black method was applied for determining soil organic carbon.In the studied areas, the total carbon stock in Khotegaira CF was112.48 t/ha and Muralibas was 87.92 t/ha. In addition , CO2 equivalent were estimated to be 412.80 and 322.66 t/ha respectively. The community forest has high potential for carbon storage, which will contribute to climate change mitigation.

 Keywords: Biomass, carbon, carbon stock, soil organic carbon

 

Evaluating the status of good governance in community forest

(A case study from mid hill community forest of Tanahun, Nepal)
 Bechan Chaudhary

Community forestry in Nepal is a successful decentralized forest management programme; however, the status of good governance practices among timber selling and non-timber selling community forestry user group is less explored. This study assessed the status of good governance in two community forests of Tanahun district of Nepal focusing on four criteria of good governance, namely transparency, accountability, participation and rule of law. Community forestry user groups (CFUGs) from Ramjakot VDC of Tanahun district were selected randomly based on timber selling within and outside the group (one from each category). The study surveyed 89 HHs (out 163 households) following simple random sampling method using structural survey questionnaire. Furthermore, focus group discussion and field observation were carried out to supplement survey data. Secondary data were collected from district forest office, community forest user group records and published reports. Quantitative data were analyzed by simple statistical tools such as mean average, percentage, ranking and spider web rank matrix method was used while qualitative data were used for explanatory buildings. The study found that level of good governance practices varies between timber selling and non-timber selling CFUGs. Timber selling community forests had relatively high level of good governance practices compared to non-selling group, which is mainly due high involvement of local communities during timber trade activities and thereby utilization of the income from the sale. Of the four different criteria of good governance, accountability remained poor in both the studied CFs, i.e. they less complied with fulfillment of duties or responsibility. However, the rule of law appeared high as it provided opportunity to the leaders to control users and enforce penalties. Nevertheless, level of participation and transparency remained good in both the studied CF and relatively satisfactory compared to other criteria of good governance. The study concludes that OP is being used by the CFUG leaders to rule the community and hence the resultant benefits from the management.

Key word: Governance, participation, accountability, transparency, community forest.

 

Potential of Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) in Begnas Lake Watershed

Beeju Poudyal

Policy momentum and current research effort and initiations around ecosystems services have increased attention of the importance of direct and indirect contributions of ecosystems in improving the quality of life of human beings. Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) now is becoming an effective mechanism to provide incentives for enhancing and maintaining beneficial ecosystem. Being a fairly new concept, developing countries like Nepal is facing different policy and implementation barriers and challenges in this aspect. This study was carried out in Begnas Lake watershed to document the ecosystem services provided by the lake and also explore its potential of developing PES mechanism in conserving the lake area. The data were collected through household survey (n=180), key informant’s survey, focus group discussions and through the minute review of policy documents. Descriptive analysis, use of the Friedman test for testing the varying perception of the respondents in various ecosystem services and a logit regression model in identifying the factors that influence in implementing PES in the area were employed in analyzing the data. The results showed that the Begnas lake provided different ecosystem services,viz. natural purification of water, recreation, ecotourism, water, fish, etc. and recreation and ecotourism becoming the most important environment services whereas natural disasters like landslides and flood were ranked as an important impact if the resources are not managed in a proper manner. Community forestry as an institution to follow the PES mechanism and indirect payment (school scholarships, incentives etc) as a compensation mechanism got the highest preference among the respondents. Knowledge about PES, income and distance from house to lake, education, and living time in the area showed positive impact towards the attitude in implementing PES in Begnas lake in upstream and downstream respectively. Also, income and family size distance from house to lake, education and knowledge about PES had positive impact towards participating /taking stake in PES implementation in Begnas Lake area. Policy of Nepal was found supportive towards PES implementation and revised forestry sector policy 2071 had seen as a milestone in it till now. Implementation of PES can be a strong recommendation in Begnas lake to manage the resources which can benefit the upstream and downstream communities after a ground level awareness program and some amendment on the existing policies can act as backbone in the implementation of PES in Nepal.

Key words: Ecosystem services, community forestry, watershed, Kaski, stakeholders

 

Above Ground Carbon Stock in Hill Sal Community Forest

(A Case Study From Tanahun, Nepal)
Binod Gayak

Carbon sequestration by existing forest biomass is an effective way to combat global warming due to greenhouse gas emissions. Estimation of forest carbon stock is one of the most important scientific bases for successful climate and carbon policy implementation, as it gives ecological and economic benefits. This study aimed to establish the base line information for aboveground forest carbon stock of Sal dominated community forest namely Chaukichalise and Janajagaran of Ramjhakot VDC, Tanahun District. For the inventory purpose systematic sample plot were laid with maintaining plot to plot distance of 286m and hence 64 plots were laid. Circular sample plots (250m2) were used for biophysical measurement. The aboveground biomass (biomass of tree, sapling) was estimated by using allometric equations and leaf litter, herbs and shrubs were estimated by following forest carbon measurement guidelines, 2071 (revised) of MOFSC, Nepal. Aster Digital Elevation Model (30 m) was used to classify the map in terms of Slope, Aspect and Altitude. House hold survey, Focus group discussion and DFO visit was done to estimate the total carbon consumption of that area. The aboveground carbon stock in each carbon pool was estimated in study site. The results indicated that the total aboveground biomass is 171.19 ton/ha and total above ground carbon stock is 80.46 ton/ha (47% of Biomass) where tree (>5 cm DBH) contributes to 96% of the total above ground carbon stock. This study provides an overview of the forest carbon stock. Amount of carbon stock vary by altitude, aspects and slope; however, it is more guided by the forest product extraction. Community is less likely to benefit from the carbon trade with current level of consumption of forest products.

Key words: climate change, carbon sequestration, biomass, aboveground carbon, carbon pool

 

Climate Change Vulnerability and Adaptation Strategies in Panchase Region of Nepal

 Bishnu Prasad Adhikari

Climate change vulnerability describes the degree to which a system is capable to, or unable to cope with, adverse effects of climate change. Main components of vulnerability can be measured with exposure sensitivity and adaptive capacity. This study applied Livelihood vulnerability index (LVI) to measure climate change vulnerability and analyzed adaptation practices in three communities namely Tilahar, Sarangkot and Bhatkhola of Parbat, Kaski and Syangja district respectively. The study was completed on 101 randomly selected households respondents through data collection and analysis on socio-demographics, livelihoods, social networks, health, food, water and natural disasters and climate variability and adaptation practices. Data were aggregated using a composite index and differential vulnerabilities were measured. The significance of adaptation practices with respect to sex, education, community, and caste and well-being status was assessed. The result of study revealed that Bhatkhola (0.360) community is the most vulnerable followed by Sarangkot (0.331) and Tilahar (0.310) respectively. The value of exposure was found to be higher than adaptive capacity in all communities. Adaptation practices were significantly influenced by communities, sex and education. The study suggested that adaptation strategy should be developed taking into consideration water availability, food security, natural disaster control. Adaptation strategy should be concentrated on reducing sensitivity and exposure along with increasing adaptive capacity.

Key words: vulnerability, adaptation, exposure, sensitivity

 

Contribution of Community Forestry in Community Development and Household Income

(A Case Study from Taplejung District, Nepal)
Chandra Lal Rai

Community forestry, being the largest forestry programme of the country has great contribution, directly or indirectly, to the local community development and household income. It is seen as a vehicle for rural development. But, analysis of its contribution on wider level development and household level income are limited due to lack of databanks. This study was therefore conceptualized to analyze the contribution of community forestry in community development and in household income at household level. The analysis was focused on financial perspectives. Total income and expenditure details of community forestry user groups were collected from the District Forest Office database and were compared with the data collected from the different related organizations and CFUGs’ records. For the household level information, three CFUGs representing different economic classes, gender and caste were taken randomly. Income of household from agriculture, livestock products, NTFP, abroad employment and forest was taken using household survey.

From the analysis, total annual gain of CFUGs was found to be NRs 4, 88,880 to NRs 7, 49,950. The major source of income in CFUGs was timber. Altogether CFUGs has been investing NRs. 29,10,090 on different community development activities and forest management activities within last five years. Among different heading of investment, 29% investment was in forest management, 16% in road construction, 12% in school support, 15% in bridge construction, 12% in income generation to poor and 16% in loan investment. Similarly, the total income that users were receiving from community forestry annually was NRs 117,090. Comparatively more income from community forest was received by poor than very poor, medium and rich people. The reason behind this was that the medium and rich people have their own more private land area where they get forest products. Very poor people get more income from daily labor; so, they get less forest income than poor people. Co-ordination among different development partners is recommended for the proper mobilization of fund in pro poor focused activities, forest management and community development works.

Key Words: Community Development, Community Forestry, Household Income

 

Climate Change Impacts And Local Adaptation Measures In Mid-Hills Of  Nepal

(A Study From Purunchaur VDC, Kaski)
Ganga Maya Neupane 

Climate change is in the centre of contemporary environmental discussions. Rising temperature and erratic rainfall has seriously increased pests and weeds and reduced agricultural productivity. Several studies have reported that rural people of Nepal know little about issues of climate change. This study aimed at understanding local people’s perception and experience of climate change, assessment of perceived impact of climate change on local livelihoods and exploration of adaptation practices of local communities. Primary data were collected through household survey, key informant’s interview, focus group discussion and direct observation.  Secondary data were collected from various published and unpublished reports and documents of different organizations.

It is found that  winter as well as summer temperature has increased. Erratic rainfall, hailstorm, longer drought period, flood, landslide and windstorm are the climatic hazards in the study area. Increased disease and pests in agricultural crops and arrival of invasive species are the most noticeable among the several negative impacts of climate change as perceived by the local people. Application of chemical fertilizers and pesticide; change in cropping method and crop variety; adjustment in cropping season;  water source protection and management; vegetable farming for house hold income, plantation of tree and fodder seedlings in both private land and forest are the adaptation strategies practiced at farm level. Local level institutions have also been formed to discuss and plan adaptation strategy. They have been traditionally practicing adaptation measures against the perceived negative impacts of climate change. Training and awareness about the improved farming technology like green house for vegetable farming and promotion of short rotational crops are recommended to make them more resilient against the climate change impact.

Keywords: Climatic hazard, perception, impact, productivity, adaptation.

 

Climate Induced Water Related Problems and Its Adaptation Practices at Local Level

(A Case Study from Bhadaure Tamagi, Kaski District)
 Harish Singh Dhami

Climate change is one of the major environmental issues in Nepal. There is much evidence that climate change is affecting biodiversity and water resources and hence weakening the livelihood assets of mountain people who mostly rely on natural resources. Water is identified as one of the most impacted sector of climate change as increased temperature and prolonged drought period have interlinked most of the hydrological processes. Several studies have been conducted to explore the climate change impacts, but climate change induced water related problems and community response to them at local level are less explored. This study assessed the climate change scenario, climate induced water related problems and community practices to cope with these problems in Bhadaure Tamagi VDC, Kaski. Participatory tools and methods including focus group discussion, household questionnaire survey and field observation were used to collect the information to understand local situation where 30 years climatic data from nearby meteorological station were used to analyze monthly, seasonal and annual trend and variability of temperature and rainfall.

The results showed that total annual rainfall is increasing at the rate of 3.96 mm per year whereas average annual mean maximum and minimum temperature is increasing at the rate of 0.06980C and 0.00270C per year. The rainfall pattern was found unpredictable and community perceived that they are experiencing less rainfall in recent days in terms of frequency mostly in water demanding period. Landslides are the major climate induced problem and the topmost hazard in the area according to community ranking and field observation. Recent huge landslide in the area depleted drinking water availability and damaged agriculture field and houses.  River cutting and drought are major problems. Most common practices to cope with water related problem at community level were piped water and collection on tank, growing less water demanding species and plantation of bioengineering species. The ongoing adaptation activities are found not sufficient and sustainable to address increasing problems. The study indicated that community people are not able now to cope with increasing climate induced problems.

Key Words: temperature, rainfall, water problem, mountain watershed

 

Forest Fire Risk Zonation and Community Based Management Practices in Madi Khola Watershed, Nepal

Jeetendra Gautam

Fire being mostly the natural agent, it is impossible to control nature, but is possible to map forest fire risk zone and thereby minimise the frequency of fire. Fire risk must involve both ignition and spreading risk. It is necessary to be able to estimate the spread of fire starting in any stand of a forest, giving the burning conditions. Spreading of forest fire can impose a threat to the natural coverage of land and safety of population. Early detection of forest fires is essential in reduction of fire damage. Satellite data plays a vital role in identifying and mapping forest fire and in recording the frequency at which different vegetation types/zones are effected. A geographic information system (GIS) can be used effectively to combine different forest-fire causing factors for demanding the forest fire risk zone map. The methodology included key informants survey and focus group discussion for extracting the causes of forest fire in the area. Risk Map Zonation comprised of methods like classification of the satellite imageries to derive land use, anthropogenic factors and topographic layers. Similarly selection of ten Community Forest Users Groups per fire risk zone as a research unit for fire management practices was done and Focus Group Discussion was carried out to explore the practices existing to control and manage forest fire in the study area.

People Negligence, Uncontrolled fire in the agricultural areas and nearby forests and fire for pastoral purpose seems major cause of forest fire. MODIS incidents revealed most of the fire occurred in the months of December to April where maximum incidents were observed in the month of March. Risk Zonation map prepared by using LULC, Forest type, Slope, Aspect, Elevation, Road Proximity and Proximity to water bodies resulted in High Fire Risk zone as 29% of the Total Watershed area lead by Moderate Risk Zone covering 37% of the total area. Major activities being practiced to prevent/control fire hazards were Leaf litter collection, Dried Firewood Collection, Grass Harvesting Awareness Campaigns, Fire line Construction, and assigning Forest Guard to the Forest area. This list of fire management practices represents the users’ perception on program’s efficiency in descending order. The derived map products are helpful to local forest managers/users to prevent or minimize fire risks within the forests and take proper responses when fires break out. This study further recommends for including the fuel factor and other fire contributing factors to derive a higher resolution of fire risk map.

Keywords: forest fire risk, geographic information system, remote sensing, fire risk rank, fire management, fire management activities.

 

Assessment of Climate and Forest Cover Change and Its Implications on Water Availability and Use Practices

(A Case Study from Two Mountain Sub-Watersheds)
Jiwan Paudel

In recent decades, increasing human intervention and its contribution to global climate change creating imbalance in the natural system and its effect are being observed in many dimension of human ecology at local level. It is therefore utmost important to monitor and analyze the impact of climate and land use/ land cover (LULC) change on hydrology. Looking at the scenario and potential scope, an attempt to explore an opportunity to integrate globally available remote sensing data to monitor land system with locally available climatic data and community perception and experiences was attempted to understand the real scenario of mountain community, highly vulnerable one from climate change perspective. Thus, the study was focused to understand the LULC change pattern and climatic scenario and its likely implications on water availability and use practices. The overall scenario analysis was done using DPSIR Framework.

For the purpose two sub-watershed, namely Shikharpur from Baitadi and Banlekh from Doti District were selected and the data like Aster DEM used for sub-watershed delineation, Landsat images (October 1994 and 2014) for LULC classification, 30 year climatic data from nearby DHM station for climatic trend and variability analysis, household data from questionnaire survey to understand household response and focus group discussion to understand the situation of watershed were used for the study. Along with, daily discharge measurement of all spring sources were carried to determine minimum water supply situation of selected sub-watershed.

The study revealed, there is high pressure on forest resources and it has been converted to other lands and the site also experience noticeable climate extremes including prolonged drought, less and intense rainfall, declining water flow in the springs. The minimum daily water supply from the catchment and its demand situations shows Banlekh sub-watershed has more scarcity of water to fulfill basic water demand and the minimum daily water supply of Shikharpur and Banlekh were found 164160 liters and 13824 liters respectively. This study concluded that the associated community are in high threat of climate induced water related problems; landslide, erosion, drought, water borne disease and agricultural productivity decline and seems not readily able to overcome the problems with current socio-economic status and forest and water management condition.

Key Words: DPSIR framework, Spring Discharge, LULC Change, Water Availability, Trend Analysis


Analysis of Community Forest Operational Plans and Their Application in Forest Management Researcher

 Jyoti Ghimire (Biswokarma)

Community Forestry Operational Plans (CFOPs) are regarded as a basis for scientific forest management in Nepal, an ultimate condition for the handover of the forest to the local people. However; the rationale of preparing these plans and their application remains to be explored. Thus, the study was carried out in Bhorletar VDC, Lamjung district with the objectives to analyze the similarities and differences of CFOP and its implementation and assessment of the reasons of such variations. Primary data were collected from reviewing the contents of the plans and by the key informant interview and secondary data were collected from the CFOP, internet, library and publications. The data were analyzed by using content analysis and review of CFOP and explanatory discussion and are presented in different tables and text. Silvicultural prescription, forest management activities, fund mobilization , climate change, environmental development provision were the similar prescriptions mentioned in CFOP and the differences were observed in growing stock, forest product pricing, membership fees, penalty rates. Similarly, timber harvesting, membership, penalty were the activities mostly referred by the users whereas the provision of climate change and environmental developmental were ignored by the users. The CFOP was prepared and handover irrespective of forest condition, site, forest species. CFOP should be made site and forest condition specific understandable for its proper implementation and the user’s needs to study and implement it thoroughly as well as monitoring and evaluation mechanism should be properly conducted.

 

Keywords: Community Forest, Operational plans, Content analysis, management, implementation

 

Human Wildlife Conflict in Lwang Sector of Annapurna Conservation Area

(A Case study of Ribhan and Lwangghalel VDC, Kaski)
 Lekha Nath Gautam

This thesis assesses the various aspects of human-wildlife conflict (HWC) in Annapurna Conservation Area (ACA). Two Village Development Committees; Lwangghalel and Ribhan, of Kaski district were selected for this study to explore the trend of HWC, effectiveness of existing program and locally acceptable resolution techniques. Data were collected through social survey methods; structured and semi-structured questionnaire survey, focal group discussion and key informant interviews and direct field verification and observation. Stratified random sampling method was adopted and 10.1% (132) households were selected for study. Spatial distribution map was prepared to assess the sensitive zone. Descriptive statistics like weighted mean, frequency, percentage and Chi-square test were done. Most respondents believed that HWC is increasing due to amplification of problematic animals’ population. Crop damage is major problem in the area where maize was found to be the main crop damaged by wildlife. Most destructive wild animals were Monkey, Barking deer, Porcupine for crop damage whereas Common leopard and Jackal were responsible for livestock damage. Average quantity of crops damage was 109.98 Kg yr-1 HH-1. Monetary value of average damage is NRs. 2407.98 yr-1 HH-1 whereby average loss of livestock contributed to 12.60% of total livestock yr-1 HH-1. To mitigate HWC, villagers are adopting locally adaptive measures; community herding, defensive noise, releasing dog, predator proof corral, chasing, and scarecrow. Among these, community herder was ranked the most effective measure. However, efficient relief support program, promotion of non-palatable crop species and crop insurance program are recommended for reducing HWC in the area.

Key Words: Crop damage, Livestock depredation, Biodiversity conservation, People’s perception, Human wildlife conflict

 

Climate Change Adaptation through Agro-Forestry in the Churiya Range of Nepal

(A Case Study of Rakshirang VDC of Makawnpur District)
 Lilu Kumari Magar

Nepal’s greenhouse gas emission is only around 0.027 percent of total global emissions. But, it is one of the most vulnerable countries to the adverse impacts of climate change. The impacts of climate change affect mostly those who depend on natural resources for their livelihood. Assessment of use of local resources is crucial to cope with the adverse impacts of climate change. The study was conducted to analyze the diversifications of agro-forestry (AF) systems and adaptation strategies through AF systems along with the factors determining their adoption in Churiya range of Rakshirang Village Development Committee (VDC), Makwanpur district. Questionnaire Survey, Direct Observation and Key Informant Interview and Focus Group Discussions were used for data collection. Frequency calculation along with chi-square test was carried out for data analysis from HH survey. Results showed that agri-silviculture and agri-silvipasture were commonly practiced as AF systems in the study area. These systems were found supporting in climate change adaptation by contributing in food security, reducing yield gap and increasing profitability in the study area. Community in the study area was mostly vulnerable to landslides, drought, and new diseases in crops, livestock and human. The result showed that land holding size, literacy rate and involvement in leasehold forests, provision of trainings determined the choice of adoption of AF systems. The variables were used on the basis of previous agro-forestry adoption studies and on the basis of study area context. Findings from the study suggested that fodder; fruit and grass species should be promoted in the study area. Agro-forestry systems like silvopasture and hortosilvipasture system with alley cropping are recommended for the area. Farmers should be given more support from both local NGOs and the government in terms of trainings, information and knowledge sharing, and other fundamental resources that they need in their farming systems.

Key words: alley cropping, drought, food security, landslides

  

Quality of Operational Plans Revised through Different Approaches

(A Case Study from Lamjung District, Nepal)
Lok Nath Lamsal

Operational plan (OP) is mandatory requirement to handover forests to local community in Nepal, which need periodic revisions, especially to promote sustainable forest management and ensure community access to forest resources to local community. The plan of community forest is revised through three different approaches, namely from (a) government support, (b) Matching grant from donor and (c) Service provider mobilization. These three approaches vary in terms of fund invested and involvement of the forest officials in revision process. The quality of OP revised through different approaches, including incentives to stakeholders from OP revision are less explored. This study assessed quality of OP revised through different approaches, focusing on compliance with the regulatory requirement, technical quality of the plan including quality assurance practices of the stakeholders. The study reviewed operational plan of thirty CFs (ten from each revised approaches) following content analysis method and also conducted in-depth study in six CFUGs (two from each category) of Lamjung district. The data were collected through the review of OP, Key Informant interviews, Users Survey and Focus Group Discussions.

The study found that quality of the revised OPs was poor, irrespective of fund invested and nature of service provider involved. Community forestry guidelines for the OP revision were poorly followed, and mostly confined on the procedural aspects such as inventory, general assembly, covering letter. OP revisions appeared like a “rituals with less intensive work at the field” in all three cases. Nevertheless, OP revision had provided extra-legal power to forest officials to mainstream recent decree and circulars, while it provided opportunity for donors to mainstream “environmental subjects” e.g. climate change. Furthermore, OP revision, especially matching grant support and service provider mobilization had provided additional financial incentives to the forest officials. The main reasons for poor quality plan are mostly due to (a) inadequate budget for revision, (b) Increased workload of District Forest Office due to inadequate human resources, (c) official and un-official departmental norms, circulars and instructions, which demotivated for quality work and (d) low awareness of the users’/user committee on OP revision processes, including dependency on forest officials for revision.  There is a need to simply the OP revision guidelines, considering forests size, management objectives and forest stand conditions along with providing adequate financial and human resources to improve quality of the plan.

 Keywords: Operational Plan, Quality, Workload, Incentives, Community Forest

 

 Implementation Status of Operational Plan of Community Forests

(A Case Study from Tanahun District)
 Manoj Ranabhat

Community forestry involves the management of forests by local communities, to manage and utilize forests to achieve the joint objective of conservation and livelihood improvement. The operational plan is being prepared for management, however level of awareness of users and its implementation is less explored. This study assess awareness of the OP among the users and its implementation, along with problems encountered by users in implementation of OP. The study was carried out in three community forest user groups (CFUGs), of Tanahun district. The study randomly surveyed 109 household from three CFUGs conducted nine focus group discussions and interacted with forest officials, key informants and other stakeholders. The secondary sources of information were further supplemented through review of OP, CFUG records and minutes. Descriptive methods of data analysis were followed. The study found that users have fair level of awareness about the OP, which remain similar on all aspects of the plan. Nevertheless, users are more aware in social and institutional aspects. Likewise, Implementation status of OP is rated fair, however level of implementation is relatively higher on institutional aspects and lower on silviculture operation. Major problems and factors in implementation of OP and constitution are low level of awareness, due to poor monitoring from forest officials, limited knowledge and skill of community members on technical and silviculture aspects. Likewise, financial investment from users on OP implementation is also low and expenditures are not made according to the plan. The study concludes that OP has not guided forest management decisions, rather it is being used to rule the local community by the CFUG executives.

 Keywords: Awareness, Community Forestry user group, Constitution, Implementation, Operational Plan

  

Social Preference and Valuation of Ecosystem Services in Panchase Area of Phewa Watershed

 Megharaj Poudel

Ecosystem services are the conditions and processes through which natural ecosystems, and the species that make them up, sustain and fulfill human life. Different stakeholders have different preference in ecosystem services based on their belief, interest and attitude, and keep the values accordingly. The study analyzed the preference of ecosystem services by different stakeholders, their willingness to pay (WTP) and analyzed the factors that affect WTP for drinking water service among the users in Panchase area of Phewa watershed. Data were collected from focus group discussion, observation and questionnaire survey and secondary data from internet, library and publications. Stakeholders were categorized as the community forest users, tourism sector actors, and tourists. The users preferred provisioning services followed by regulating and cultural services. The tourism sector actors preferred cultural services followed by regulating and provisioning services whereas the tourists preferred cultural services. Users and tourism sector actors were willing to pay more for provisioning and regulating services respectively. The household income, education level and livestock unit were significantly affecting (p< 0.05) willingness to pay for drinking water service among the users. The preference of the stakeholder can be taken into consideration to identify the services for payment mechanism. Strengthening economic activities and increasing education level / awareness level help to garner resources to manage and conserve ecosystem services.

Key Words: Ecosystem Services, WTP, Preference, Valuation

 

Survey and Habitat Monitoring of Bengal Florican (Houbaropsis Bengalensis) in Chitwan National Park

 Nurendra Aryal

Bengal florican is the critically endangered avifauna survives in Nepal, India and Cambodia.  In Nepal, it is confined inside the protected areas of Terai. The Bird favors relatively open short grassland sometimes with patches of tall grasses and scattered bushes and trees. Information on distribution, population and habitat of Bengal florican is limited. So the study was intended to explore the habitat that Bengal florican prefers. For the study, five grasslands of CNP have been surveyed with vantage point observation (Direct observation). The survey of grassland was made during 20th April to 25th September 2015 and two observation was done on each grassland. Altogether 5 males and 3 females observed and recorded. The total population with equal sex ratio 8-12 has estimated from five research sites within the CNP. The habitat monitoring work was carried out on one kilometer transect shows the Imperata cylindrical (51%) is dominant grass species of the habitat, followed by Saccharum spontaneum (42%) and Desmostachya bipinnata (7%). Wild ungulates like Rhino, Spotted Deer, Hog deer also share the same habitat which is used by Bengal florican. Therefore, conservation of grassland habitat is essential for both the florican and wild ungulates. Satellite tagged florican shows that the birds leave breeding ground after August when the average maximum height of grass goes above 1.5m and spend quite considerable time of about four months near human settlements (Sep – Dec/Jan). For conservation of Bengal florican, the habitat management works considering the florican need to be continued and even extended. Species Conservation Action Plan must be prepared with due consideration on the conservation of the species beyond the fences.

Key words: Conservation, Habitat, Transect, Breeding ground, Fence, Endangered species

  

Timber Trade Practices in Mid-hill Community Forests of Nepal

Pankaj Kumar Kayastha

Timber is considered as the most significant product of community forestry. The main aim of the research was to understand the timber trade practices in community forests by analyzing formal and informal actors involving in the process and policy guidelines. Lamjung and Tanahu district were purposively selected for the study. Mostly traded Sal timber was selected for the study after analyzing records from the districts and two community forests, one from each district, namely Deurali community forest (CF), Lamjung and Ausharajudi CF, Tanahu were selected randomly for in-depth study on trade basis. To assess the value chain mappings, actors involved in the trade and causes of price spread, more areas such as Narayanghat Area, Butwal area, Pokhara and Kathmandu valley were purposively selected as timber traded in these areas from Lamjung and Tanahu. Primary data were collected through the focus group discussion with the Community Forest User Groups consultation with the District Forest Officials and key informants of Lamjung and Tanahu and timber businessman from all selected areas through checklists. Key informants and timber businessman were selected using snowball technique. Secondary data were collected from the District Forest Office records, meeting minutes and records from CFUGs, policy documents, and other related literatures. As this research was qualitative and descriptive in nature, collected data were analyzed in narrative and descriptive way using content analysis and simple mathematics. Stakeholders’ analysis was done on the basis of role, interest, influence and impact of the actors in timber trade. It was found that CFUGs rights of harvesting and sell of timber were curtailed by the recent guidelines, different circulars and government decisions. Various administrative and bureaucratic hassles were involved in timber trade from community forests. The leaders of community Forest User Groups, forest officials, and other hidden actors like different gangs/groups and political parties/groups and even police were engaged outside the formal domain in the timber trade process and about 16% of the price of Sal timber was raised at traders level actual buying price due to these hidden actors as hidden cost which was passed onto the consumer and Sal timber trade provided mutual benefits to the local elites, forest officials and timber businessman. Enabling environment for timber trading should be developed for more competitive market through construction of business environment, provision of business development services and financial services.

 Key Words: Timber traders, Curtailing, Hidden cost, Hidden actors. 

 

 Site Assessment and Spatial Potentiality Mapping of Moringa Oleifera in Terai Region, Nepal

(A Case Study from Rupandehi District)
 Prakash Bhattarai

Forestry sector has focused to promote the cultivation of Non Timber Forest Products species for the livelihood of the people. Though the Moringa oleifera (Moringa) is a fast growing plant species having multiple benefits, people are not showing interest in the promotion of this species for their betterment. Site condition and backup information are the key basis for commercial cultivation, promotion and generate optimum benefits. The study entitled “Site Assessment and Spatial Potentiality Mapping of Moringa oleifera in Terai Region, Nepal was conducted to assess the physical environmental factor (edaphic, climatic and topographic) on site and explore the potential distribution of the Moringa plant for cultivation in Rupandehi district regarding aspect, slope, elevation, LULC and soil types. Two sites; forestland and farmland were taken for the soil, topography, climatic condition. Each sites were divided into 50 x 50 m plot and soil sample from 0 – 20 cm depth in each plot of each sites were taken for (Organic carbon % and pH). Climatic data; temperature, relative humidity and rainfall, were retrieved from Department of Hydrology and Meteorology. All other extraneous influencing factors were taken as constant while conducting analysis.

Along with edaphic factor topographic factor like Altitude, aspect, and slope influence the distribution and growth of plant. A digital elevation model (DEM) was used to generate elevation, slopes, and aspect information and FAO soil map for soil characteristic of the study area. Geographic information system (GIS) and remote sensing (RS) were used. The result was 37% of land in Rupandehi district is Highly suitable (S1), 47% Medium suitable (S2) , 8% Low suitable (S3) and 8% No suitable (N) respectively were found as a function of altitude, slope, aspect, soil and land use for the current physical suitability of Moringa cultivation. Findings of the study suggest stakeholders; farmer, government and other related organization to promote the Moringa in the district for the income generation and betterment their livelihood through its commercialization. Suitability analysis is multi dimensional approach which may not be related to the land itself allover so further study concerning with social views of the society and economic ability of the farmers associated with suitability is recommended.

Key words: physical suitability, mapping, Moringa, Rupandehi district

  

Assessment of Community Forest User Groups’ Perception towards Payment for Ecosystem Services in Phewa Watershed, Nepal

 Prakash Shah

Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES), deals with a financial support scheme that aims to conserve ecosystem services by providing an economic incentives to the community. The use of PES schemes has been implemented in conservation with focus on watersheds, biodiversity, carbon sequestration and aesthetic and landscape beauty. Phewa Watershed, which is under the several anthropogenic threats. Due to which the studies have stated that area of lake is shrinking over the years by 47.5 ha from 1988 to 2012; which implies gradual loss of lake life if current rate of sedimentation persists. The objective of the study is to enhance our understanding for the implementation of PES mechanism, to assess the present problems of Phewa watershed as perceived by people and to explore the preference of locals for willingness to pay for various ecosystem services. Study was conducted in six different community forests in six VDCs of Phew watershed. Questionnaire Survey, group discussion, key informant interview and Contingent valuation method was used for data collection. Major problem and solution of it, in Phewa watershed as perceived by people is Sedimentation and incentive mechanism espectively. People are willing to pay more for provisioning services and 93% of them are interested in PES mechanism where they have opinioned that their participation is vital for effective design and implementation. Also, capacity building of local community and concrete conservation policy supporting PES are essential for benefiting community for their conservation effort.

Keywords: Contingent Valuation, Conservation, Community forestry, incentive mechanism

 

Status of Canids and Human-Canids Conflict in Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve, Nepal

 Prakash Thapa

Canids are one of the least studied groups of carnivores. They are widely distributed, occurring on all continents except Antarctica. They are characterized by adaptable and opportunist behavior, flexible diet and multifaceted social organization. Ecologically, as predators, they play an important role in food chains, keeping populations of prey species under control and thus aiding the balance of nature.

The present study was conducted to show the status of canids and conflicts with human in Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve of Nepal. Direct field observation, camera trapping, sign survey, household survey, group discussion, key informant interview and preliminary survey were carried out to collect the data. Camera trapping was conducted in Gurjaghat and Niseldhor area of the reserve. The result of camera trapping showed the presence of Red Fox with Relative Abundance Index 5. Also, Jackal was directly observed and sound was heard at night. The relative signs abundance of Red Fox, Jackal and Dhole were 0.69/km, 0.38/km and 0.19/km, respectively. The presence of Wolf was confirmed by key informant interview and group discussions. Canids were found to be widely distributed within the reserve. Red fox and Jackal were found to be more noticeable canids within the reserve. The major places for canids distribution were Thakur, Kaspur, Fokseri, SaatBan, Tikadhara, Pajbasna, Mursala, Falgunebesi, Kholathari, Sechun, Dhuka, Rajbasna, Jauleghati, Fursedeurali, Ratabhir, Dakharka, Surtibang, Maelkharka, Jalebisaune, Bhujikharka (Kade), Bhujikhun, Gurjaghat, Kalilekh etc. Canids were predating livestock in the reserve since long time. The trend of canids population was found to be decreasing. The major anthropogenic problem for canids conservation were encroachment, retaliatory killings, illegal hunting, deforestation and grazing inside the reserve. During the period 2070 to 2071 B.S. the number of livestock depredation was 82. Shared habitat was found to be the major cause for livestock depredation. Similarly, people have negative attitude towards canids conservation. Comprehensive canids conservation action plan is recommended for the long term survival of cainds in Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve.

Key words: Anthropogenic problem, Perception, Predation, Canid conservation plan

 

Livestock Grazing Effects on Vegetation and Wild Ungulates in Shuklaphanta Wildlife Reserve

Pratikshya Paneru

Livestock grazing removes ground flora, tramps soil and replaces globally threatened wild herbivore so it is becoming a serious issue from the protected area management prespective. With the increasing human population and livestock rearing practices has created immense pressure in maintaing the floral and faunal diversity mostly in lowland protected areas of Nepal. The study was planned with the aim of assessing the livestock rearing practices in the buffer zone of SWR and its effects on vegetation and wild ungulates. Key informant interview and household based questionnaire survey administered to evalaute the livestock rearing practice and trend. Vegetation assessment and dropping survey were carried out to access the effects on vegetation and interaction between livestocks and wild ungulates in SWR. This study resulted that most of the households of bufferzone of reserve rear cattle (cow/ox) in huge number with compare to goat and buffalo. Average LSU per household of different grazing sites low, medium and high was obtained as 3.04, 3.79, 5.07 respectively. Most of the time, they take their cattle for grazing inside reserve. Similarly vegetation analysis prevailled that siru (Imperata cylindrica) is the dominant species (IVI=158.34) in low grazing area. However in high grazing areas dominant species is tapre (Casia tora) (IVI=105.07). Heavy grazing by livestock leads to increasing of the unpalatable species and decreasing of palatable species of wild ungulates which means SWR has impact of grazing. Average cattle droppings and wild ungulates pellet are positively correlated in low grazing areas (.482) whereas negatively correlated in medium (-.473) and high grazing areas (-.572) and found significant (P<0.01). Grazing at low pressure can be an important management tool but the increasing level of grazing can lead to the habitat degradation and replacement of the habitat of wild ungulates. Cattle management action with habitat improvement areas are recommended to restore the palatable vegetation in the favor of wild ungulate.

Key words: Grazing, Species diversity, IVI, Cattle droppings, Habitat degradation

 

Analysis of Bio-Engineering Measures: Status, Potentiality in Panchase Region

 Raj Kumar Gupta

Soil degradation is a global problem and it has been affecting about two billion hectares of land around the globe. While no region is immune, developing countries are more severely affected by soil degradation than developed. Bio-engineering techniques are most useful techniques to stabilize marginal and degraded lands of watershed and to maintain the soil productivity and to generate income of the rural people. An effort was made to explore the status and potentiality of soil bio-engineering technique in Panchase region of western Nepal. The study was completed through focus group discussion, 44 Key informants interviewed from 3 sites namely Bhatkhola (Syangja), Sarangkot and Patneri (Kaski), and questionnaire survey with 14 experts, field observation and sample measurements. Then laboratory data was formed from primary data and spatial data. Research reports from journals, magazines and internet were used as secondary data. Descriptive analysis for qualitative data, statistical analysis for quantitative data and spatial analysis were carried out to meet the objectives of the study. Multiple Decision Criteria Analysis was used to explore effectiveness of plant species in bioengineering measures and their suitability mapping. The result showed that the respondents revealed Bamboo, Amrisoo, Nigalo and Napiyar as most popular and effective species for bioengineering measures, whereas lab tests of 8 grass species showed Vetivar and Amrisoo as effective species for slope stability through cohesion added by roots. Different respondents perceived the different issue of bioengineering measures differently however, the issues regarding slope stabilization and their desire for replication of the technology were found quite positive. Majority of the area of 2 VDC namely Bhatkhola and Sarangkot (>70% area) were found highly suitable for bioengineering measures. The study recommends Vetivar, Amrisoo, Napiyar, Bamboo and Nigalo to promote for bio engineering measures as well as for better livelihood.

 Key words: bioengineering, effectiveness, slope stability, suitability

 

 Assessment of Terrain Stability Index Using SINMAP Model in Adherikhola Sub-wateshed of Phewa Watershed, Nepal

 Richa Pradhan

Landslide is a natural phenomenon, which is common to Nepal due to its active tectonics and uneven topography. Shallow slope failures are common to Nepal during monsoon. Vegetation plays an important role in stabilizing shallow failures. Phewa Watershed’s lithology is mainly siltstone, sandstones and intensively weathered rocks, highly prone to erosion and shallow landslide; and 42.7 ha of the Phewa lake area has shrunk over period of 1988 to 2012. SINmap stands for Stability Index mapping, and model applies for shallow slope failures. The objective of the study is to access the stability of terrain, to map the landslide hazard and to check stability of terrain under two grass species. Study was conducted in Andheri khola watershed, and soil samples were collected in random distributive manner with sample size of 35. Landslide mapping and soil depth measurement was conducted throughout the basin. Constant head method was conducted to measure transmissivity and triaxial and direct shear test was conducted for cohesion and frictional angle. Analysis was conducted in SINMAP model in Arc GIS. Root cohesion of two grass species Vetiver and Amliso was used. When model was run using soil parameters from field without vegetation, it showed that 0.003% of the site is under defended class and 3.35% in upper threshold. As parameter in model was upgraded with grass species cohesion, it showed that there was no region under defended and upper threshold class. In comparison, Vetiver has 54.95% and Amliso 22.31% of Stable zone; which implies that vetiver can be more effective among two species to stabilize the terrain. The site under defended, upper threshold and quasi stable needs immediate intervention measure and anthropogenic activities should be checked to prevent up scaling of the present percent of defended and upper threshold index.

Keywords: Shallow slope failure, SINMAP model, Landslides, Vetiver, Amliso

 

Resource Use Pattern And Contribution Of Local People For Begnas Lake Conservation

 Safalta Shrestha

Study of Resource-Use Pattern and Contribution of local people for Begnas Lake Conservation was conducted in the Kaski district to identify resources used by people, and the contribution made by the local people for conservation of Begnas Lake. A stratified random questionnaire survey of 115 households and informal interviews with key informants was done. CVM was applied to know the willingness to pay of local people for conservation of Begnas lake.MS-Excel and SPSS were used for the data analysis.

It was found that local people are depending on the wetland based resources in different pattern with respect to occupation. Local people are participating in lake conservation program in different way and willing to contribute more than what they have been doing. Contribution of boating communities is seen higher among the beneficiary groups. Hotelier community has higher willingness to pay for the lake conservation. The monetary value between resource use and contribution of beneficiary group for lake conservation is highly difference. The total valuation of Begnas Lake is found to be NRs.85606 month-1. Detail study on valuation by covering other services and their beneficiary groups is recommended so that the PES mechanism can be established for sustainable conservation of lake and assure continuous benefits.

Keywords: Resource-Use pattern, Contribution, Valuation, Local people

 

Land Cover Change Analayis in Ishaneshwor VDC of Lamjung District, Nepal          

Shambhu Prasad Tiwari

The increase on demographic pressure resulted on the land cover changes conversion, especially posing threats to forests. Forests are the common property resource, which is being encroached to meet the human basis needs. The recent studies have shown the forest transactions had occurred in Nepal; however the causes of such transaction are poorly explored. Hence, the study analyzed the land use land cover change of Ishaneshwor Village Development Committee of Lamjung district of Nepal. Freely available remotely sensed LANDSAT images and verified topographic maps were used to assess land cover between 1990, 2003 and 2015. Training samples were collected from the field and were used to validate the classification. Key informants survey and discussions with CFUG members and District Forest Officers were done to assess the reasons of change in land cover. Data were analyzed and interpreted using Arc map 9.3. Supervised classification of satellite images were carried out using Erdas imagine. The land cover was divided into four classes i.e. forest, water, agricultural land and others. The results showed annual increment of forest cover between1990-2003 was 0.2 % along with increment of 0.11% in agriculture land (0.11%) and other (4.75%) while water bodies decreased by 4.16%. Similarly, land use change analysis between 2003-2015 shows increased in forest cover and other land as by 0.32% and 1.17% percent per annum while that of water bodies and agriculture land decreased by 1.54% and 0.64% per annum. Overall, forest cover increased by 0.26% per year between 1990 and 2015. This study concludes that forest cover has increased in the study area which is mainly due to community involvement in management, reduction on dependency on forest resources, demographic changes, increasing opportunities outside farm and forests. This study recommends that community participation should be continued for sustainable management of forest resources in the study area.

Key words: Land cover, Landsat, Forest, Image analysis.

 

Resource Condition and Market Potential of Chiraito, Amriso and Timur from Peoples Perspective in Panchase Region of western mid-hill of Nepal

 Sandesh Bolakhe

Studies on NTFPs mainly focused on its distribution, quantity estimations, market chain analysis and domestication etc but very few studies have carried out on the factor that motive to NTFPs collection. This thesis assesses different factors affecting the Collection of Chiraito, Aamriso and Timur (CAT) found in the Panchase region of western Nepal. Three villages Bagefadke (Syngja), Ramjha (Parbat) and Bhadaure (Kaski) of panchase region were selected for the study purpose to find out the resource condition and market potential of CAT from people’s perspective. Data were collected using structured schedule interview with 105 randomly selected HHs and includes information collected from key informants and focus group discussion. Collection of CAT varied across the HHs; on an average they collect 0.38 kg of chiraito, 7.28 Bhari Amriso and 0.62 kg Timur seasonally. The findings revealed that Age, large family size, illiterate peoples and near users is more likely to collect CAT. In addition, most of the HHs collects CAT for medicine, food and Household purpose and few of them sell CAT for economic return. The outcome of the logistic regression revealed that male member of HHs was found significantly involve in collection of NTFPs. Similarly, Sex was found to significantly reduce the activity on collection and trade of NTFPs. Walking distance to resource significantly increases the favors of collection indicate that valuable CAT collected are from near location. While the positive relationship between Family Size, Distance from Home and collection (p<0.1) implies that large family size and users near to the forest are more likely to collect CAT than other Variables. Resource Condition of CAT as Compared before Five Years with Peoples Perception is seen increasing in case of Amriso (68%) and Timur (60%) but 34% of the people argue that Resource Condition of Chiraito is decreasing in the study area. Similarly, Market Potentiality of CAT is Seen High (55%, 67% and 68% resp.)  Amriso and Timur in comparison to Chiraito are seen to have more market potentiality from people’s perception. It may be because of the high availability of Amriso and Timur in the area. Results of the research suggested that successful NTFP commercialization can reduce poverty, however  there remains a need to help the rural poor  to overcome the various challenges that constrain successful NTFP commercialization, including securing a sustainable resource supply, accessing market information and developing ways of overcoming uneven power and barriers to market entry.

Key Words: CAT, Panchase, Collection Factors

 

Climate Change Vulnerability and Ecosystem Based Adaptation in Panchase Region of Nepal

 Sanjay Tiwari

 Exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity are the major components of vulnerability. Climate change (CC) vulnerability describes the degree to which a system is capable or unable to cope with adverse effects of CC. Different studies have shown that Panchase region to be sensitive to CC impact. Livelihood vulnerability index (LVI) was usedto measure vulnerability extent and adaptation practices in three communities namely Bhadaure (Kaski), Ramja (Parbat)and Bagefadke (Syanja) of Panchase Protected Forest area. Primary data of 30 indicators of socio-demographics, livelihoods, social networks, health, food, water and natural disasters and climate variability were collected through 90 randomly selected household respondents from 3 different communities. Local adaptation practices and Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) approaches were explored from household survey, field observation, focus group discussion and secondary data sources as well. Rainfall and temperature trend were analysed from meteorological data of Lumle and Panchase station. Data were analysed and they measured different indices including Livelihood Vulnerability Index (LVI). The result showed that all three communities were highly vulnerable. Bagefadke held the highest degree of vulnerability with an index scoring 0.367 followed by Ramja (0.355) and Bhadaure Tamagi (0.354). Local people adopted both traditional and EbA measures, but their preference was on EbA. The study suggests that EbA strategies i.e. water source conservation, land rehabilitation, livelihood diversification and ecosystem restoration programs should be implemented to maintain the natural system and reduce CC vulnerability along with traditional practices.

Key words: Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA); Sensitivity; Adaptive capacity; Exposure;

                  Vulnerability  Indices

 

Status, Trend and Factors of Forest Cover Change on Tanahun District Nepal

 Shankar Tripathi

 Forest cover change processes include deforestation, afforestation, forest degradation and forest improvement through human activities and natural processes. Account of widespread degradation and deforestation in Nepal has been noticed in different literatures. Through contribution of community forestry toward improvement of forest cover, condition and community wellbeing has been found positive in case of Mid-hill region. Detailed study to understand the exact situation seems important to formulate the future management strategy. As such this research tried to examine spatio-temporal forest cover status with associated determining factors including community forestry program of Tanahun District. The District is ranked as one of the important timber trade district in mid-hill region. In this study, forest cover change patterns over the period of 1976 to 2015 were analyzed to understand the situation of forest cover before and after the community forest handover. In order to analyze forest cover change status, series of Landsat imageries, DEM, Topographic map, Google earth image, demographic and community forestry records together with community perceptions were used. Land use land cover and normalized difference vegetation index map of different year were prepared and analyzed with respect to accessibility, demographic and community forestry trend of the District. Information were analyzed through, temporal matrix, descriptive statistics and correlation.

The results showed the forest covered 63%, 50% and 61% of total land in 1976, 1991 and 2015 simultaneously. Forest decreased at the rate of 1.23% until 1991 and then increased at the rate of 0.67% up to 2015. Based on community perception the negative changes are due to road, settlement, timber smuggling, forest fire, uncontrolled grazing and encroachment while positive due to emigration, occupation shift, agroforestry practices and particularly by plantation, awareness and conservation activities after community forest handover. In addition, correlation of VDC level forest cover data of the year of 1991, 2001 and 2011 with corresponding population, no. of household, no. of CF and its area indicate community forestry and migration would be the reason of forest cover change. So further specific research will be essential to know the exact contribution of CF to improve forest cover and other factors responsible for the change, which could be possible through high resolution satellite data and intensive field survey.

Keywords: Land use land cover, Community forest, Population, Landsat image

 

Perception of Stakeholders towards Leasehold Forestry Program in Gorkha District

 Shanta Kaphle

The study aims at understanding stakeholder’s situation and their perceptions and preferences about the outcomes and activities of the pro poor leasehold forestry program. The leasehold forestry program has been designed and implemented in Gorkha since 1998 to improve the livelihoods of the forest dependent poor by leasing degraded land to the poorest. For the study, out of 17 program VDCs (Village Development Committee) 5 VDCs purposively selected considering the criteria of age of the groups and ethnicity so that proper sample size i.e. 10 % from each category of ethnicity could be represented. Data were primarily based from review of literature, program documents, office records, consultation with government officials and field visit with structured questionnaire. A CLIP (collaboration, Legitimacy, Interest, Power) tool was adopted for stakeholders’ analysis in stakeholder workshop. At implementation level, there are 18 stakeholders identified having different roles, position in terms of power, interest and legitimacy. The study revealed that leasehold forest user groups are marginalized having more interest with low influence and District Forest Office (DFO) and District Livestock Service Office (DLSO) are dominant stakeholders having more power and legitimacy. Stakeholders, the beneficiaries of the program highly favored and supported the statement that forest condition is being improved and greenery is maintained and the least supported to the statement related to infrastructure development. It revealed that different categories of respondents though viewed slightly different perception on the outcomes; fundamentally their views were in the same page. Saving and credit scheme, small infrastructure support, goat raising and livelihood improvement activities were ranked as more preferred activities which are to be incorporated in the program and implemented with the wider support of stakeholders. To improve its effectiveness the interests of the poor need to be heard and their influencing capacity be enhanced through continue support to their lives. An integrated pro poor focused program to be devised with the involvement of multi-stakeholders and some policies and legal provision should be amended in favor of leasehold forest groups.

 

Key words: Stakeholder, Perception, Power, Interest, Legitimacy, Preference

 

An Analytical Study on Impacts and Local Perception of Landslide in Phewa Watershed, Kaski, Nepal

 Sher Bahadur Rokaya

Landslides play a major impact on mountain landscape. It threatens  people, their  property  and  livelihood  sources  as   damage  to  crops,  farmland, livestock, used forest  and  infrastructure.  Thus, it is essential to study and document landslide including landslide impact, perception and adaptive strategy of local people; and its prevailing condition. Systematic study of landslide is an urgent need in the context of natural resource management, environmental protection and consequently for the livelihood of people. Therefore this research entitled “An analytical study on impacts and local perception of landslides in Phewa Watershed of Kaski district, Nepal” was conducted to assess impacts and causes of landslides through local perception and exploring the adaptive strategy for landslide.

The methods used during this study were reconnaissance   survey to locate the landslides and to get overall idea about landslide adjoining area. For the collection of primary data such as landslide affected households and loss of life and property, field observation of rock and soil, focus group discussion, Key informant survey and household survey were carried out. Inventory was conducted to identify the landslide types using Verne’s classification with contained materials to know the area and volume of individual landslide. To prepare the landslide distribution map coordinate points were captured using GPS Garmin receiver.

The result revealed that the major natural causes of landslides in the study area are heavy rainfall and earthquake. In the study site 16 hazardous debris slides and debris flow covering the area of 130842 m2 and volume of 461565 m3 occurred in 29, July 2015. About 7.88 ha. Agricultural land has been damaged, 11 death casualties and 29 houses damaged and displayed 6 households. Risk perception of landslide varies with caste, gender, education and exposure of the people. Understanding the risk perception of community people it is applicable in hazard preparedness and disaster risk management plan preparation specially to link up upstream and downstream of watershed.

Keywords:    Adaptive Strategy, Perception, Impact, Hazards

 

Germination and Initial Growth of Moringa oleifera lam (Horse-radish Tree) in Nursery

Shyam Narayan Jha

Moringa oleifera is becoming the most popular plants due to its nutritional and medically curative value. In developing countries, Moringa has the potential to improve nutrition, boost food security, foster rural development, and support sustainable land care.Production of better quality seedling depends on the sources of seed, its quality and the soil combination applied in the nursery.

The study was conducted to assess germination capacity and initial growth of Moringa with respects to soil combination, temperature regime and seed sources. The study was based in two type seeds from Nepal and India. Temperature regime as Tunnel and open bed and six levels of combination of forest soil, nursery soil and sand. Five different soil mixture proportions and nursery soil as control were compared using two seed sources in two temperature regimes to study the effect of different potting mixture on the seedling growth in initial stage. The potting mixtures were Treatment-1, Treatment-2, Treatment-3, Treatment-4, Treatment-5, and Treatment- 6 or control. The results of the current investigation revealed that seedling growth in initial stage were significantly affected by different potting mixtures. The seedling response was variable for soil mixture, when potting mixtures with more forest soil were applied. The seedlings primary and secondary roots were significant for T4 and T5. The investigation revealed that the seedling root length, primary and secondary root number were significantly affected by seed source and seedling shoot length, root length, primary and secondary root number were significantly affected by both temperature regime as tunnel and open bed. Hence, the nursery bed with tunnel for seedling production in winter, Indian seeds source and soil mixture as T4 and T5 were recommended to all season Moringa oleifera seedling production and their success.

 Key words: seed source, potting mixture, initial growth, mean germination time

 

An Assessment of Forest Inventory in Community Forest Management Regime

 Srijana Awale

Community forest management (CFM) involving local communities residing in and around forests in Nepal have mandatory provision of having technical forest management plan for the management and resource utilization. Forest inventories are used as a tool for monitoring community forests as it provided the basis for managers to guide forest management and harvesting. However, forest inventory are poorly done and don’t reflect the forest conditions, and thereby effect on forest management and harvesting. Hence, this study makes comparative assessment of forest inventory results with that of the OP and explores reasons for variation. The study conducted forest inventory on five community forests following Community Forestry Inventory Guideline, 2061. The study conducted forest inventory on 38 plots following systematic sampling methods. Likewise, review of operational plans, key informant survey, interaction with forest officials and leaders of community forest user groups were carried out. There is high variation on growing stock volume between two inventories. The growing stock is underestimated in all cases. Forest inventories are sub-standard and invented. Inadequate human and financial resources, limited skilled manpower, recent administrative circulars and guidelines and negligence are main reasons for variation. The study noted that forestry inventory guideline of community forest is poorly followed and users have poor knowledge and understanding. Illusion is created by application of “scientific subject” in the community forest. There is a need of making forest inventory practice simple, doable and robust.

 Keywords: Community Forest, Inventory Guideline, Growing stock, Operational Plan

 

 Feasibility of Implementing Scientific Forest Management in Community Forests

(A Case Study from Lamjung District)
 Yam Bahadur Rumba

Scientific forest management (SCiFM) is expanding gradually in community forests (CF) of Terai and mid-hill districts of Nepal, especially after Forest Policy, 2000. Furthermore, increased investment from the donor assisted forestry project in Nepal further supported to re-instate of the scientific forestry. The SCiFM within the community forests is now being implemented in more than one third district of Nepal, especially in community based forest management. However, feasibility of introducing the scientific forestry practices within the community forestry and likely implications to users is less exploredConsidering this, the study was carried out to assess feasibility of scientific forest management in the CFs based on intensive study in two CFs of Lamgung district, where scientific forest management was introduced recently. Data were collected through key informant interviews, household survey, focus group discussion and interaction with the district forest officials and secondary sources.Descriptive statistics, narrative analysis, present net value and benefit cost ratio were used to analyze the collected data.

The study found that majority of the users are not aware of the SCiFM plan and processes followed during the preparation of the plan. They are the “passive participants of the entire planning processes”. Many of the users simply understand SCiFM as “simply harvesting of the tagged trees every year”. Furthermore, cost benefit analysis between the SciFM and previous management approaches revealed that cash flow would be high in the SCiFM, however benefit cost ratio would be high in previous management approaches. This is mainly due to high investment cost of the scientific management and low price of the timber to the users. To make the SCiFM feasible within the CF, there is a need to either increase timber price to the users or CF should be encouraged to put more timber to the market. It is more likely that SciFM may promote commercial forest management. There is a need to revisit the SCiFM management approaches within the CF along with enhancing technical competencies and investment capacity of the users to make SCiFM feasible within the CF.

 

Keywords: Scientific forestry, Benefit Cost Ratio, Community Forestry, Technical Competency

 

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