At the opening ceremony of the 8th Annual SAVE meeting in Kathmandu, SAVE Chairman Professor David Houston today formally welcomed Nepal’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation as the nineteenth Member of SAVE. Man Bahadur Khadka, Director General, DNPWC accepted a bouquet and expressed the great honor for DNPWC of becoming a Government Partner, recognising the close relationship and mutual support this represents.
David Houston went on to emphasise how the vulture conservation work in Nepal has led the way not only with respect to developing the Vulture Safe Zone concept, but in achieving the first large scale reductions in diclofenac use which have directly led to vulture populations starting to recover. He went on to say how the releases close to Chitwan National Park are a great flagship and so far are going extremely well. The chief guest Bishwa Nath Oli, Secretary, Ministry of Forest and Environment said that the Government of Nepal is highly committed to vulture recovery actions and eager to continue support in conservation breeding programme, the banning of vulture toxic drugs and maintaining Vulture Safe Zones. Two of the founder members of SAVE, Bird Conservation Nepal (BCN) and the National Trust for Nature Conservation have been working hand in hand with DNPWC, and BCN are the hosts of this year’s meeting.
Forty delegates representing six range countries and other international experts have converged on Kathmandu to review progress and evaluate changes to the regional SAVE Blueprint (Recovery Plan). This plan also represents the main Asian component of the CMS Multi-Species Action Plan for vultures. A full report will be made available after the meeting and further updates will be announced.
The release has also been featured on the Audubon website https://www.audubon.org/news/nepals-endangered-vultures-are-finally-making-comeback