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Bhutan's National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries and Nature Reserves
Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary (BWS) is located in the northeastern part of Bhutan and covers an area of 1538 sq. km encompassing parts of Trashi Yangtse, Lhuentse, and Mongar Dzongkhags. The sanctuary was officially gazetted in 1995 and operationalized in 1998 to protect large areas of virtually untouched Eastern Himalayan ecosystems ranging from warm broadleaved forests to alpine ecosystem.

Royal Bengal Tiger
The sanctuary is a show case for 293 species of birds, out of which 5 species are included in the IUCN Red List of globally threatened and 4 species globally near threatened, and another 6 recorded as restricted range species. There are also 32 species of butterflies out of which some are identified as rare. The park symbolizes the highest tiger habitat at 4000m, which is quite rare in nature. Some of the important wildlife species include black necked crane, red panda, Leopard, Himalayan black beer, tiger, musk deer, Barking deer, wild boar, wild dog and fox. The park contains one of the richest temperate forests in the eastern Himalayas with fir forests as old as400 years old which form contiguous habitat for tiger distribution in Bhutan.

The sanctuary is the habitat for big cats like Bengal tiger and common leopard. Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is also one of the two winter habitats for the black-necked cranes, which come down from the Tibetan plateau to escape the extreme weather conditions. In addition the park also has many sacred religious sites like Rigsum Gonpa, Dechhenphodrang monastery,, Singye Dzong, Pemaling and many sacred lakes, which are visited by pilgrims from all parts of Bhutan making it special from cultural point of view also.

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Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary

Located in the Eastern Part of Bhutan, Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary with an area of 650 Sq. Km is one of the new protected areas to be recently operationalised in the year 2002. The two geogs of Merak and Sakteng under Trashigang Dzongkhag falls under this Sanctuary. Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary protects the easternmost temperate forest ecosystems in the country with endemic species like eastern blue pine, black-rumped magpie and many others found only in the east. The Sanctuary is funded by Mac Author Foundation, based in United States.

Phibsoo Wildlife Sanctuary

Phibsoo Wildlife Sanctuary located in the South-central Bhutan has been operational since 2002 with the support of Bhutan Trust Fund and WWF Bhutan Program. The Sanctuary has an area of 278 Sq. Km and falls under Sarpang Dzongkhag. Phibsoo is unique for diverse flora and fauna such as elephant, guar and golden langur. It is the only protected areas in the country where natural Sal forest and chital deer are found.

Khaling Wildlife Sanctuary

Khaling Wildife Sanctuary is located in the south-eastern part of Bhutan with an area of 273 Sq. Km. The Sanctuary covers only one Dzongkhag of Sandrupjongkhar. It is yet to be operationalised. The Sanctuary is important for elephant, guar and other tropical wildlife and is the only habitat in Bhutan where pygmy hog and hispid hare occur.

Jigme Khesar Strict Nature Reserve (former Toorsa Strict Nature Reserve)

Jigme Khesar Strict Nature Reserve (former Toorsa Strict Nature Reserve) is located in the Western most part of Bhutan and covers two Dzongkhags of Haa and Samtse. It has an area of about 650 Sq. Km and is the only Reserve in Bhutan without human habitation. The Reserve protects the westernmost temperate forest of the country from broadleaf forests to alpine parks including the small lakes of Sinchulungpa. The area is bordered by China in the West.

Courtesy Ministry of Agriculture - DOF Nature Conservation Division

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