In October 2012, WWF began a four-year project to conserve snow leopard habitat, promote water security, and help communities prepare for climate change impacts in Central Asia. The USAID-funded, $4.7-million Conservation and Adaptation in Asia’s High Mountain Landscapes and Communities project will conduct field activities in and build alliances among six of the snow leopard’s 12 range countries: Bhutan, India, Nepal, Mongolia, Kyrgyzstan, and Pakistan. The project will run through September 30, 2016.
A July 2012 camera trap study in Nepal identified 37 individual tigers—a marked increase from 18 tigers counted in 2009. The tigers were monitored over a three-month period inside Bardia National Park in Nepal and the Khata wildlife corridor in the Terai Arc Landscape.
Wildlife migrations depend on natural wildlife corridors—passages that allow regular travel, seasonal migration or population dispersal of different species. Any barriers to this basic need are a threat to healthy wildlife populations. WWF works with businesses, government leaders, public and private land managers, hunters, anglers, farmers and ranchers to ensure wildlife connectivity is a part of all land and wildlife management decisions.
Climate change is causing many Eastern Himalayan glaciers to melt faster than ever observed and in the process they leave behind pools of water that form glacial lakes. Weak walls of earth and rock contain the water but can burst suddenly, resulting in massive flooding downstream that is catastrophic for local communities.
WWF pioneered a project in the Langtang region of Nepal that empowers communities to adapt to climate change impacts. Faced with water shortages, unpredictable rainfall, and shifting seasons, the project has helped these local communities become “water smart.”