Strengthening community conservation in a biodiversity hotspot PATHFINDER AWARD 2021 WINNER

Siddharth Edake
Publicado: 15 Julio 2021
Última edición: 12 Enero 2022
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Summary

A pilot scale project was initiated in the 3 villages of Sukhai, Kivikhu & Ghukhuyi in Nagaland, which aimed at creating & linking Community Conserved Areas (CCAs) across the landscape & supporting conservation through livelihood creation. The model adopted aimed at strengthening the resilience of the communities by rejuvenating traditional conservation practices & providing supplementary livelihoods. Activities included compiling Indigenous Knowledge, sensitization on landscape conservation & capacity building of the communities in biodiversity documentation & monitoring, as well as promoting ecotourism as a livelihood option. Today, the project has yielded +ve results in terms of sustainable use of biological resources by adopting longterm sustainability, enhanced governance & effective conservation of landscape. This model is being mainstreamed within the governance mechanism & upscaled through a multipronged approach including financial support & legal recognition.

Classifications

Region
Sudeste Asiático
Scale of implementation
Local
Subnacional
Ecosystem
Bosques tropicales de hoja perenne
Ecosistemas de agua dulce
Ecosistemas forestales
Río, corriente
Theme
Actores locales
Ciencia y investigación
Comunicación y divulgación
Conectividad / conservación transfronteriza
Conocimientos tradicionales
Diversidad genetica
Especies y la extinción
Financiación sostenible
Fragmentación del hábitat y degradación
Gestión de tierras
Gestión y planificación de áreas protegidas y conservadas
Gobernanza de las áreas protegidas y conservadas
Incorporación de la perspectiva de género
Institucionalización de la biodiversidad
Manejo de cuencas
Medios de vida sostenibles
Mitigación del cambio climático
Poblaciones indígenas
Prevención de erosión
Reducción de desastres
Restauracion
Seguridad alimentaria
Servicios ecosistémicos
Challenges
Avalanchas/Derrumbes
Lluvia errática
Degradación de tierras y bosques
Pérdida de la biodiversidad
Cambio estacional
Erosión
Pérdida de ecosistemas
Cacería furtiva
Cosecha insostenible, incluida la sobrepesca
Gestión ineficaz de los recursos financieros
Falta de acceso a financiación a largo plazo
Falta de oportunidades de ingresos alternativos
Extracción de recursos físicos
Cambios en el contexto socio-cultural
Falta de capacidad técnica
Sustainable development goals
ODS 3 - Salud y bienestar
ODS 5 - Igualidad de género
ODS 12 - Producción y consumo responsables
ODS 13 - Acción por el clima
ODS 14 - Vida submarina
ODS 15 - Vida de ecosistemas terrestres
Aichi targets
Meta 1: Aumento de la sensibilization sobre la biodiversidad
Meta 2: Valores de biodiversidad integrados
Meta 3: Incentivos reformados
Meta 4: Producción y consumo sostenibles
Meta 5: Pérdida de hábitat reducida a la mitad o reducida
Meta 7: Agricultura, acuicultura y silvicultura
Meta 9: Especies exóticas invasoras prevenidas y controladas
Meta 10: Ecosistemas vulnerables al cambio
Meta 11: Áreas protegidas y conservadas
Meta 12: Reducir el riesgo de extinción
Meta 13: Protección de la diversidad genética
Meta 14: Los servicios ecosistemicos
Meta 15: Restauración de ecosistemas y resiliencia
Meta 17: Estrategias y planes de acción para la biodiversidad
Meta 18: Conocimiento tradicional
Meta 19: Intercambio de información y conocimiento
Meta 20: Movilización de recursos de todas las fuentes

Ubicación

Zunheboto, Nagaland, India

Challenges

In Nagaland, though traditional conservation practices have helped protect biodiversity, and there are records of  CCAs being declared in the early 1800s, especially in response to forest degradation and loss of wildlife, these CCAs face numerous challenges in their creation, effectiveness and sustainability and require sustained efforts for their conservation. The foremost challenge faced by 81% of CCAs is providing alternative livelihoods. Morever, these CCAs are isolated dense patches of forests and there is a need to ensure conservation of large contiguous forest areas by enabling the formation of jointly managed CCA.  

Beneficiaries

The primary beneficiaries of the project consist of community and community institutions (Village Councils, Biodiversity Management Committees, CCA Committees, hunters, church groups, youth and women. 

¿ Cómo interactúan los building blocks en la solución?

The local champions manage to motivate the communities to initiate as well as continue the conservation related activities . The documentation of local biodiversity through People's Biodiversity Registers helps to codify the oral knowledge as well as know more about the bidoiversity. Alternate livelihood in form of ecotourism helps the the youth, women’s groups and the traditional hunters of the community to enhance their household income.

Impacts

Around 222 species of birds, 200 species of butterflies have been documented and protected by declaring 939 hectares as community conservation reserve and banning hunting and destructive fishing across the remaining landscape of forests and rivers (total area being 3751 hectares). 

The direct beneficiaries so far have been 1200 individuals from 3 villages while number of indirect beneficiaries that have been sensitized through various tools is approximately 10000 individuals.

The communities reported increases in the protection of natural resources after the formation of jointly managed CCAs, and improvement in management of common resources.

The elders were satisfied with the documentation of their traditional and cultural indigenous knowledge in the People’s Biodiversity Register while the women, youth & hunter groups reported increases in their household income due to ecotourism by $260 per household per year.

Neighboring 7 villages that share their forests & natural resources with the current three pilot villages have approached TERI to be a part of the CCA network and replicate the conservation related activities in their respective CCAs as well.

Story

Siddharth Edake

Along with my colleagues and community members, I used to regularly visit the villages to document the biodiversity of area. During one of my visit’s, I was on a mission to track and find the Hodgson’s frogmouth (Batrachostomus hodgsoni), a nocturnal bird species usually found near Tizu river. But after reaching the river, we found several people partying on the river bank. The villagers in our team explained that the river bank is a famous party spot for nearby villages. They still decided to check for known faces in the crowd and if any illicit activity was being carried out. To my surprise they had found fishing gear, which included battery, based fishing equipment. They showed us dead fish in the bucket and a jar full of beetles collected from the riverbank. This clearly indicated a case of illegal fishing and hunting in the conserved area. The offenders were asked to be present in the village the next day so that a legal notice (summons) could be issued to them explaining what they had violated and the amount they had to pay as fine. This act put forth by the communities of Nagaland made me realise the sincerity and efforts that some of the community members are ready to put in towards conservation of nature.

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Siddharth Edake The Energy and Resources Institute