Sustainable Land/Range land Management at Shytemi,Merak Geog,Trashigang
Sustainable Land/Range land Management at Shytemi,Merak Geog,Trashigang
Shetaymi is a winter grazing area for semi-nomadic yak herders from Merak Geog, Tashigang. There are 11 households in Shetaymi. They stay here for 7 months in a year. There are about 1400-2000 heads of livestock grazing in these areas. The grazing area is between 600-800 acres in Shetaymi. The human population is about 200.
This winter grazing area for yak herders also serve as summer grazing area for livestock from the lower valleys and villages. Therefore, these grazing areas are subjected to constant grazing and stamping often resulting in negative environmental consequences and impacts. Though the land area is huge, it cannot support much livestock due to lack of grasses or other vegetation during winter. Therefore, yak herders are forced to lopped fodder trees from the nearby forest as an alternate source of fodder for their livestock. As a result of heavy lopping year in and year out, the forest in the immediate surrounding show all signs of decay and degeneration often culminating in huge landslides and ravine formation. The landslides begin here in these areas with serious and catastrophic consequences for the downstream dwellers in Radhi and Chaling. Unless the problem is first addressed right at the source, any interventions in the lower region will be inconsequential and would make bad economic sense.

The need to intervene and save both natural environment and livelihood options of yak herders and those communities residing downstream is real. It is an environmental disaster time bomb waiting to wreak havoc anytime. Therefore, all agencies with similar environmental protection and conservation priorities and objectives must collectively intervene at the earliest.
The natural pastureland is at various stages of degradation due to overgrazing, uncontrolled grazing and poor management. The situation is becoming worse and very critical indeed. The herders are concerned about losing large tracts of pastureland to land degradation each year. So far, there is no intervention whatsoever to prevent further land degradation or efforts to repair or rehabilitate these natural rangeland.
This grazing land falls in the upper catchments of Gamri chu which passes through the villages of Phongmey and Radhi. Any disturbance in the upper catchment could lead to serious consequences in these two villages. As per scientific recommendation, we need at least 25 acres of temperate rangeland per livestock unit. Approximately, we need around 37500 acres of grazing land to support 1500 livestock units. However, there is only about 1000 acres available grazing area. Therefore, it is supporting much more number of animals than its actual carrying capacity. The consequences are inevitably overgrazing and land degradation with serious consequences downstream.

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Project Snapshot

Forum for Semi-Nomad Yak Herdrers of Merak
Area Of Work:
Climate Change Mitigation
Grant Amount:
US$ 42,826.09
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 5,231.74
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 32,521.74
Project Number:
Satisfactorily Completed


Dzongkhag and RGOB

SGP Country office contact

Mr. Tenzin Wangchuk
Mr. Tshering Phuntsho
009752322424 (ext:330)


UN House, Peling Lam (Street), Kawajangsa, Thimphu, P.O. Box No. 162
Thimphu, Bhutan, 11001