Eastern Himalayan Alpine Meadows

About the Area

The high elevation meadow and shrub habitat of India, Nepal, Bhutan, northern Myanmar and China supports some of the most lush and diverse plant life found at high altitudes. More than 7,000 species exist in the ecoregion, triple the number in other alpine meadows in the Himalayas.
Local Species
In addition to numerous species of dwarf Rhododendron, two threatened plants - Lactuca cooperi and Juncus sikkimensis, grow only in these meadows.

In eastern Nepal, Rhododendron nivale, an aromatic species with miniscule leaves, grows to elevations of 5,000m. Ground orchids are an important part of the flora, and many of these are collected as medicinal species.

Mammals of the region include the snow leopard (Panthera pardus), the endemic red goral (Naemorhedusbaileyi), the endemic squirrel (Petauristasp.), wolf (Canis lupis), dhole or Asiatic wild dog (Cuon alpinus), Himalayan black bear (Ursus thibetanus), and Red panda (Ailurus fulgens).

Among the numerous birds found in this ecoregion are the Yellow-backed sunbird (Aethopyga nipalensis), Redheaded trogon (Harpactes erythrocephalus), Himalayan Quail (Ophrysia superciliosa), and the Impeyan Pheasant (Lophophorus impejanus).

Threats
Population growth has brought about livestock grazing, hunting of predators such as the wolf and snow leopard, medicinal plant collection, developmental activities like energy-harnessing dams on regional waterways, air and water pollution. Activities related to mountain tourism like trekking and the cutting of slow-growing shrubs for firewood has also had negative effects.

Resources

Size:
121,000 sq. km (47,000 sq. miles)

Habitat type:
Montane Grasslands and Shrublands

Geographic Location:
South-Central Eurasia, stretching through parts of Bhutan, China, India, Myanmar, and Nepal

Conservation Status:
Relatively Stable/Intact

Quiz Time!

What do you know about the food habits of Wolf?

Answer:
Wolves have a wide ranging diet and will eat anything from small rodents to large ungulates. Their preference is for animals such as deer but at certain times of year they will even eat berries.

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