Wetlands of Nepal / Ramsar & Simar Sites In Nepal: – Wetlands are a place where land never hides and water never dries. Wetlands are simply an area that is covered with water for a part of the day or year.
Wetlands are a place where people can get their feet wet without being able to swim. Wetlands are water that settles and kisses the earth and never quiets.
The wetlands are as varied as the landscape in which they are occur; hence countless of names. The National Policy wetlands of Nepal that defines “wetlands as natural or artificially created areas, such as marsh, swamps, river floodplains, lakes, water storage areas and agricultural land that contain water from underground water resources or atmospheric precipitation that can be permanent or temporary, static or flowing, and fresh or saline water.
The wetlands of Nepal range from the torpid ponds of the subtropical Terai to the glacial lakes of the Upper Himalayas, indicating the various wildlife species supported by them.
Nepal’s wetlands constitute an important ecosystem that hosts a large amount of endemic wildlife species, many of which are on the verge of extinction. It is estimated that there are about 750,000 ha of wetlands in Nepal, which is 5% of the total area of the country.
It is believed that 190 species of water birds, including resident species, migratory species and uncommon and rare resident species, inhabit these wetlands. In addition to this, many other mammals, fish, reptiles and birds are found in these habitats. At least two species of crocodiles found in the wetlands of Nepal have now been threatened.
Wetlands offer a multitude of ecological, economic and social benefits. They are the habitat of fish, wildlife and a variety of plants.
Wetlands such as nurseries for many saltwater and freshwater fishes are also important features of the landscape, as they retain and unhurriedly release flood water and snow melt, recharge groundwater, recycle nutrients and provide recreational opportunities and Wildlife observation opportunities for millions of people.
Wetlands have high levels of biological diversity after tropical rainforests, as they are among the richest ecosystems in the world, providing crucial life support for much of humanity, as well as other organisms.
The wetlands offer sanctuary to a wide variety of plants, invertebrates, fish, amphibians, reptiles and mammals, as well as millions of migratory and sedentary water birds. Although Nepal has quite a few wetlands, the ecological diversity of wetland ecosystems is very large.
Nepal’s wetlands support an important diversity of globally threatened species and populations of fauna and flora.
Namelist of Wetlands of Nepal / Ramsar Sites in Nepal
Here we are here with the lists of Wetlands of Nepal. Here they are;
- Phoksundo wetland
- Koshi tapu Wildlife reserve
- Jagdishpur reservoir
- Gokyo wetland
- Ghodaghodi Lake
- Mai Pokhari
- Beeshzari and associated lakes
- Rara lake
- Pokhara lake clusters
- Kyangjing wetland
- Panch Pokhari wetland
- Singjema wetland
- Bedkot tal
- Padereni Tal
- Rampur Tal
- Nakhrodi Tal
- Badhaiya Tal
- Gaindahawa Tal
- Halkhoria Daha
- Baba Tal
- Kamal Daha
- Devi Daha
- Pathru Daha
- Jandaul Pokhari
- Badh Jhora wetland
- Betani Daha
- Hasina wetland
- Raja Rani Pokhari
- Jamunkhadi Daha
- Rani Tal
- Karnali River wetland
- Titi Tal
- Taudaha Lake
- Bagmati River and Gaon Basant ponds
- Shivapuri watershed
- Wetlands in Langtang National Park
- Lakes in Sagarmatha National Park
- Betana wetland
- Wetlands in Chitwan National Park
- Tilicho Lake
- Gaidhawa Tal
- Taltalaiya wetland
- Batula Tal
- Geraya Bonda
- Jingale Tal
- Patal Bhumeshwor
- Dau Tal
- Chhede Daha
- Dhalpuri Pokhari
- Ali Tal
- Chhatiwan Tal
- Rangeni Tal
- Dibrung Daha
- Timure Pokhari
- Ajuwa Lake
- Badka Lake
- Ajayan Kunda
- Sundeu Lake
- Pipermandi Tal
- Lamadaya Tal
- Lisedali Tal
- Mathilo Dhaune Tal
- Tallo Dhaune Tal
- Baba Lake
- Bahuliya Tal
- Bhairbhuwa Lake
- Bhaiswa Lake
- Budi Nakhor Lake
- Chamraiya Tal
- Chhaya Tal
- Chharra Tal
- Chiriye lake
- Dubri Tal
- Dudhawa Tal
- Faurahauwa Tal
- Gaichkatuwa Lake
- Ghod Tal
- Godchittiya Lake
- Guruduhawa Tal
- Guldrahawa Tal
- Jakhor Tal
- Joginiya Lake
- Kohilai Lake
- Korkotala Tal
- Lami Tal
- Lauka Bhauka Tal
- Lukli Tal
- Mahadeva Tal
- Mohana Oxbow Tal
- Nami Tal
- Nakror Lake
- Nardahuwa Lake
- Nathuniya Tal
- Piparawa Tal
- Puraina Lake
- Raji tal
- Rupiya Tal
- Sahadeva Tal
- Sarkiniya Lake
- Siddha Baba Pokhari
- Soniya Tal
- Sukhaiya Tal
- Sukhaliya Lake
- Sunhara Tal
- Thongruwa Tal
- Ajingar Lake
- Baijyanath Tal
- Banda Lake
- Bantaria Tal
- Copre Tal
- Gangla Tal
- Gobi Tal
- Godbijula Lake
- Jhilmila Lake
- Jharan Tal
- Kalikich Taal
- Karki Lake
- Kulla Tal
- Mudka Lake
- Naini Tal
- Naranga Lake
- Newland Lake
- Peli Lake
- Pipermandi Tal
- Puraina Lake
- Pyara Lake
- Shova Tal
- Siddha Sarobar Banda
Wetlands of Nepal With Short Information
Here are the details of many of them; Check it out;
It is an oligotrophic Y-shaped alpine freshwater lake. It drains Phoksundo River in the south and water is supplied by the Sagar, Phoksundo, Chisa, Baulaha, Dekhutaichu, Jagatilumba and Chollapu rivers. It is located in Dolpo District, on the southern slopes of Kanjiroba Himal, 145 km northwest of Pokhara covering the area of 500 ha.
Around 155 species of flowering plants in the basin have been recorded. The wetland birds found are Red-crested Pochard and Ruddy Shelduck. Other wetland birds recorded downstream are Common moorhen, Common coot, Eurasia Wigeon and Bar-head goose.
Other water-dependent birds include the brown dipper, the white-throat dipper, and the white-throated redstart. The catchment is the winter habitat of the snow leopard and musk deer. The National Park supports a rich mammalian fauna including the endangered Snow Leopard Panthera uncia and many Tibetan species.
More than 20 Chhottens in the southern belt and a Gumba on the eastern site of the lake are situated where annua pray and worship take place. Traditional Tibetan culture in Upper Dolpo and Buddhism and ancient Tibet culture is called the Bon-Po religion in Lower Dolpo, including the Ringmo village (Tsho).
Koshi Tapu wildlife reserve
Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve is a natural, permanent and freshwater river system located on the flood plains of the Sapta Koshi River. It is located on the Sapta Kosi River near Biratnagar, Saptari and Sunsari Districts, in the terai of southeastern Nepal near the border with India.
Koshi Tappu is a rectangular-shaped reserve and was formed by the Koshi barrage near the Nepal-India border on the East-West Mahendra National Highway. The flood plain is a periodically flooded flat area between the river channel and the terrace or plateau that delimits the plain.
The Koshi Tappu floodplain dries gradually during the post-flood period, although it remains saturated with water in certain places, while in other places it dries to a loose and semi-arid sandy condition.
The flood plain is also characterized by grassy swamps, oxbow lakes, back swamp lakes and many other depressions that retain water throughout the year.
The existing vegetation consists of various types of physiognomy such as submerged and floating aquatic plants, tall reed stands, seasonally flooded grasslands / savannas and structurally complex forest communities under various spatial arrangement conditions.
There are 514 species of plants. Among the 485 bird species, notable birds recorded on the site include Gallicrex cinerea, Caprimulgus asiaticus, Bubo coromandus, Coracina melanoptera, Saxicola leucura and Megalurus palustris.
At least 114 species are water birds, 176 species breed in the reserve and 180 species are passage migrants or winter visitors. As, 31 mammals species are recorded of which, the last remaining population of wild water buffalo in Nepal (Bubalus arnee) inhabits the area and the Gangetic dolphin (Platanista gangetica) has been recorded in the Koshi River.
This wetland is located in 10 km south of east-west highway in Ward 9 of Jagdishpur VDC, Kapilvastu district covering the area of 225 ha. Jagadishpur reservoir was declared as ramsar site on August 13, 2003, and also featured in the Directory of Asian Wetlands.
The reservoir was built in the early 1970s over the Lake Jakhira and agricultural land for irrigation, and is fed by the Banganga River in the catchment area of the Churia hills. It is surrounded by cultivated land and smaller lakes that serve as a buffer zone for bird movement.
A dike runs from north to south from the center of the reservoir. The eastern part has a shallow water body, while the western part of the reservoir is deeper and completely covered by water.
The vegetation is chiefly in a submerged succession stage with patches of floating species and reed marsh formations. Marsh meadow and extensive marshes lined with swamps lies in the northern part.
There are 25 species of fish from 12 families and 7 orders, including lowland Terai endemic (for example, Notopterus notopterus, Oxygaster bacaila), threatened species (Puntius chola) and common species that are prey to wading birds and waterfowl .
The reservoir is surrounded by smaller lakes (for example, Sagarhawa and Niglihawa) that serve as a buffer zone for bird movements of 42 recorded species.
It is located in Langtang National Park. Gosaikunda, in relation to the saint and the wetland, is a series of oligotrophic alpine freshwater lakes with alpine meadows, bogs, lakes / ponds, streams, wet steep slopes create a unique and representative wetland in the paleoartic biogeographic region of the Himalayas.
It is one of the highest freshwater lake systems in the world, it is an important source of water for the Trisuli River that originates from Trishul Dhara in Gosaikunda. It produces 20 MW of electricity (from 2 power houses in Trishuli and Devighat), on which a large downstream population, including that of the Kathmandu Valley depends.
There have been around 100 species of flowering plants in the Gosainkund basin. The wetland birds recorded in Gosaikunda are the Brahminy Duck (Tadorna ferruginea) and the common teal (Anas crecca).
The potential wetland birds listed in that area are the bar-headed goose (Anser indicus), the Brahminy duck (Tadorna ferruginea), the common tea (Anas crecca), Tufted duck (Aythya fuligula), Common Merganser (Mergus merganser), Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) and Brown Dipper (Cinclus pallasii).
Gokyo is a series of oligotropic lakes located in Sagarmatha National Park. Partially fed by the Ngozumba glacier, it is located at the head of the Dudh Koshi River, which descends from the seventh highest mountain in the world.
There are 6 main lakes in the Gokyo series, of which Lake Thonak is the largest lake at 4843 m followed by Gokyo. Dudh koshi is a sub-basin of the Koshi river in Nepal, which feeds the Ganges river basin, safeguarding the livelihoods of millions of people downstream.
There have been more than 80 species of flowering plants recorded from the Gokyo basin. The wetland birds found in Gokyo are the Brahminy ducks, the Eurasian Wigeon, the northern Pintail, the common coot, Great crested Grebe, etc. It is also a breeding site of at least 6 pairs of Brahminy ducks. The winter habitat of musk deer is the lower catchment.
The area of Lake Ghodaghodi is located in the Kailali district that encompasses the VDCs of Darakhnidi, Ramshikharjhala and Sandepani. It was declared a Ramsar site in 2003.
It consists of a system of large and shallow lakes with associated swamps and grasslands surrounded by mixed tropical deciduous forests on the lower slopes of the Siwalik hills. There are about 13 small lakes and associated ponds in the area.
The forest and the wetland act as a wildlife corridor between the lowlands and the Swaliks. The wetland area is home to 473 species of plants and about 16% of birds (140 spp.) in the country. The Lake has records of 388 vascular plants: five pteridophytes, 253 dicots, and 130
monocots. It supports the number of rare and vulnerable species. The fauna includes lower-risk species on the IUCN Red List such as the ferruginous duck (Aythya nyroca), the gray-headed fish eagle (Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus) and the Asian rock python (Python molurus).
Other rare species include the lizard (Varanus flavescens). In total, 29 species of fish have been recorded, including the threatened Puntius chola and the endemic Notopterus notopterus and Oxygaster bacaila.
The area supports numerous globally threatened species (IUCN 2002) including the critically endangered Red-crowned roofed turtle (Kachuga kachuga), Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris), leopard (Panthera pardus), Three-striped and roof turtle (Kachuga dhongka)
Beeshazar and associated lakes
The Beeshazar and the associated lakes are located in the Chitwan district that encompasses two municipalities, Bharatpur and Ratnanagar, and two VDC, Gitanagar and Bachhauli.
It was declared a Ramsar site on August 13, 2003. Beeshazar is a natural freshwater lake fed with surface and underground water located in the buffer zone of the Royal Chitwan National Park.
It provides an excellent habitat as a waterhole and corridor for numerous endangered wildlife species. It is an extensive typical oxbow lake system of inner terai within the buffer zone of the Chitwan National Park, which provides an excellent habitat for endangered wildlife species. The lake’s catchment area helps control flooding in the Khageri River and recharges groundwater and streams.
Terrestrial vegetation is dominated by the Sal forest (Shorea robusta). Silk cotton, (Bombax ceiba) and Bot Dhainyaro (Lagerstroemia parviflora). The vegetation of the wetland consists of sedge (Cyperus spp.), Common reed (Phargmites karka), morning glory (Ipomea carnea ssp. Fistulosa) and Mikania (Mikania micrantha) are the prominent associated species.
A total of 26 mammals, 18 herpetofauna species and 271 bird species in the area have been reported of which 60 bird species are wetland dependent. In total, 17 species of fish are recorded for Beeshazar.
The site supports the largest amount of marsh crocodiles (15-20 individuals). 273 species of birds of 61 families are recorded, of which 60 are wetland species.
Mai Pokhari is a wetland in the Ilam district of Nepal that was designated a Ramsar site on October 28, 2008. It is a pilgrimage center for Hindus and Buddhists.
The lake within the wetland that reflects the emerald waters has a circumference of approximately 1 kilometer (0.62 miles) and boats are operated. There is Maipokhari Botanical Garden which is of horticultural and ecological importance in the periphery of lake.
It houses a rock garden, an orchid house, plants collected from many regions of eastern Nepal, and a greenhouse. There are also 300 species of birds recorded in this wetland.
Rara lake is situated in Mugu District, Karnali Zone, in the mid-western Himalayan region, 24 km north of Jumla and 370 km northwest of Kathmandu covering the area of 1,036 ha.
Rara Lake is the largest freshwater lake in Nepal (5.1 km long, 2.7 km wide, 167 m deep, 140 km of coastline) and is a unique and rare example of natural wetlands in the Biogeographic region of the upper Himalayas. The lake is rich in nutrient content and transports 1,039 km3 of water.
The Thakur Baba temple is 500 meters up, near the southeast corner of the lake, and is linked to a local myth about the gods that shoot an arrow to discharge the water from the lake and reduce potential flood damage.
Lake Rara is located within the Rara National Park, administered by the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation. The lake’s buffer zone was declared in 2006. The Nepal Army has been deployed for conservation and protection activities within the Park.
The lake has a rich invertebrate fauna. Phytoplankton algae and aquatic plants are present in the lake. Of the 235 bird species registered in the lake, 49 species are wetland birds; majority are migratory. The lake is a wintering area for small numbers of several species of waterfowl, and provides a staging area for many species migrating across the Himalayas.
Pokhara Lakes clusters
The name of Pokhara itself was derived from “Pokhari,” which means Pond in Nepalese vernacular, one of the types of wetlands. The valley itself is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Nepal, where natural heritages, especially lakes, mountains and “boating” are the main tourist attractions.
The cluster of lakes i.e. Pokhara is of international importance, as it supports vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered species or threatened ecological communities.
The group of lakes in the Ramsar site of the Pokhara Valley consists of the nine lakes, located in the two municipalities of the Kaski district, western development region of Nepal. Of the nine lakes, two lakes, Phewa and Kamalpokhari, are located in the metropolitan city of Pokhara, where the rest of the lakes belong to the municipality of Lekhnath.
The total area of the basin comprises 178.5 km2 that includes bodies of water, agricultural land, forests, settlements and other urbanized areas. Agricultural land dominates the use of land in the catchment area followed by forests and bodies of water.
The bodies of water comprise almost 3% of the total catchment area of the cluster of lakes.
Phewa Lake is the largest lake in the Pokhara Valley, located in the foothills of the Himalayas at an elevation of 782 m.a.s.l., which symbolizes a lake with an intense anthropogenic load of various sources of pollutants and contaminants.
A clear freshwater lake and marshes associated with adjacent rice paddies in the Pokhara Valley. Most of the lake is quite deep (maximum depth of 20 m), but there are shallow areas on the north and west coasts with emerging aquatic vegetation.
The lake is fed by several small streams and a river that enters its western end, and has a single exit to the Pardi Khola river at its eastern end.
Grassy marshes along the north and west shores; rice fields in adjacent areas and terraced fields, secondary scrubs and degraded forests with Schima waliichii and Castanopsis indica on the nearby slopes.
The lake has a rich fish fauna that includes several native carp species, as well as murrel, garfish and spiny eels. There are two very popular sport fish, the Mahseer Tor tor and the Asla.
The lake, the marshes and the adjacent rice paddies support small resident and wintering populations of many species of water birds, and provide an important area for the staging of water birds that migrate over the Himalayas, particularly in spring.
Lake Begnas is the second largest lake in the Pokhara Valley located in the foothills of the Himalayas at an altitude of 650 m.a.s.l. covering an area of 3.28 km2.
The main water base of the lake is the catchment and Syankhudi Khola that runs from west to south towards the lake. It is a versatile lake and is applicable for irrigation, commercial fishing and recreation that encompasses a dynamic role in the lentic ecosystem and the environment.
Some emerging vegetation around the shoreline and floating vegetation on the surface. The lake is surrounded by rice paddies, and there are terraced fields and patches of secondary scrub and degraded forest in the nearby hills.
Amphibians and fish abound, and the Mahseer Tor tor, a very popular game fish, is common.
The lake, the marshes and the adjacent rice paddies once supported small residents and wintering populations of many species of waterfowl, and provided a staging area for waterfowl migrating over the Himalayas, but the destruction of marsh vegetation and high levels of the disturbance in recent years has made the area unsuitable for most species.
Rupa lake is the third largest and most heavily polluted lake in the Lekhnath metropolitan city of Pokhara. This lake is located in the foothills of the Himalayas at an altitude of 600 m.a.s.l. with an area of 1.35 km2.
This small progressing eutrophic lake has Talbesi Khola, as the main source of the lake with the sole Tal khola as outlet. The existence of 450 diverse species of flora and fauna exposes its biological diversity. This lake assists the great varieties of flora and fauna species and is under the stress of countless anthropogenic elements.
Some floating aquatic vegetation and reed beds; rice paddies along the northern shore, degraded forest to the west and relatively undisturbed forest to the east.
The lake is known for harboring a rich invertebrate fauna, and fishes are abundant. Small numbers of waterfowls can be observed including Nettapus coromandelianus and Metopidius indicus.
Depang Lake is the third largest freshwater lake in the metropolitan city of Pokhara, located between green hills with an area of 3.24 km2 and a depth of 3-5 m.
It is in an elevation of 562m from sea level. This is famous for its fishing purpose. This lake is also influenced by anthropogenic activities, natural erosion and sedimentation.