… for the return of the birds

Lhakpa Quendren

Residents of Buli village in Nangkor gewog, Zhemgang in an effort to become environment-friendly will paint their roofs green again.

Except for the new houses, green-painted Corrugated Galvanised Iron (CGI) sheets of many houses have now discoloured.

Green roof was made mandatory in 2013 after the gewog administration initiated the ‘Green Buli’ concept to integrate bird conservation needs in the village.

Nangkor Gup Singye Wangchuk said that the disappearance of Hornbills and several bird species was attributed to the reflection of CGI sheets. “In the past, Buli was home for Hornbill. Not many are seen around today.”

Buli Mangmi Sonam said that the gewog conducted several public consultations and reminded them of the initiative. “We encourage people to cooperate and I hope everyone would do it.”

Villagers say that the ‘Green Buli’ initiative has helped the birds return to the forest around the village.

Following the initiative, former Nangkor Gup Kinley Wangchuk, 68, said that the number of common mynas or Indian myna (Yuchur in local dialect) has drastically increased in the village.

He said that as households switched from wooden shingles to CGI sheets with road access the birds disappeared. “I would definitely say it is an excellent idea because now we can see many birds around the village.”

According to Kinley Wangchuk, the then Zhemgang Dzongdag Harka Singh Tamang brought a foreign expert to the village where the expert suggested painting roofs green for the return of birds.

Nangkor gewog administration plans for mandatory repainting work on the discoloured sheets for uniform roof colour.

Gup Singye Wangchuk said that some have started repainting their roofs after the public agreed to it during the consultation meeting held by the gewog.

“It is compulsory, but some of them have not started. The gewog administration will come up with a timeframe and issue an office order soon to maintain uniformity,” he said.

He said that the repainting work should be completed before summer since the paint does not stick well during the rainy season.

Gup Singye Wangchuk said that the first roof painting was funded by the climate change project. “Villagers expect to receive the same support but they have to bear the full cost this time.”