Itanagar: A total of 131 plant and 30 bird species were recorded during the ‘Itanagar Biodiversity Walk’ organised by the Arunachal Pradesh Biodiversity Board (APBB) at the Gyekar Sinyik (Ganga) Lake near here.

The walk was organized to mark World Forestry Day.

Prominent among the plant species recorded were five rare plants namely Cythea Spinulosa, Podocarpus Neriifolius, Garcinia Pedunculata, Piper Haridasanii, Piper Longchites and two endemic fern species Angiopteris Evecta and Dipteris Wallichii.

Some of the notable birds recorded during the walk included the Striated Heron, White-breasted Waterhen, Slaty-bellied Tesia and Black-crested Bulbul.

Around 20 different species of butterflies, including the Banded Treebrown, Northern Birdwing and Glassy Blue etc were also recorded during the walk.

The biodiversity walk was carried out in three different trails inside the lake premises.

The 74 participants were divided into three groups led by Dr L R Bhuyan, Dr B S Rawat, D Yonggam, Dr Daniel Mize, Dr Joram Khopey, Dr B B Bhatt, Tajum Yomcha, Dr R K Taj and Dr G Murtem.

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Participants included members from the biodiversity management committee, research scholars/students from Dera Natung Govt College in Itanagar, NERIST, Rajiv Gandhi University and officers from the Biological Park, Itanagar.

Earlier, while flagging off the walk, Thrizino-Buragaon, legislator and advisor to forest and environment minister Kumsi Sidisow, emphasized the need to create awareness among the masses on the importance of biodiversity conservation.

He appreciated the initiatives of the APBB and appealed all to contribute towards the common goal of conservation so as to maintain ecological balance in the state.

APBB chairman Tayek Goi said the Board is planning to organize such walks once a month in the forest areas of the Itanagar Capital Region.

“Such walks, especially surveys, will help the Board identify potential biodiversity heritage sites to be designated under the National Biodiversity Act, 2002,” Goi said.

APBB member secretary Koj Rinya said the findings will help in field authentication and augmentation of information available in People’s Biodiversity Register (PBR).

Among others, additional principal chief conservator of forests, N Tam, senior forest officers and members of the Ganga Lake Development Committee were present on the occasion.

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