IN375
Chandubi Lake and adjoining areas


Year of compilation: 2004

Site description
This wetland was formed during the great earthquake of 1897, thus it has immense value as a tectonic lake. It is inside Barduar Reserve Forest in Kamrup district, about 60 km southwest of Guwahati city, close to the Meghalaya border. Mayang Hill Reserve Forest lies to the south of Chandubi Lake. Being located inside a reserve forest has made it a secluded wetland with low biotic interference, and a potential site for bird conservation. Chandubi lake covers c. 300 ha and with its magnificent scenery is already on the tourist map. A large number of picnickers throng here every winter, mostly from Guwahati city and nearby areas. With proper planning and management, the area could be a major site for ecotourism. The villagers of Rajapara forest village and other fringe villages will also benefit from ecotourism. The lake is surrounded by low undulating hills covered with Moist Deciduous forest and patches of Semi-evergreen Forests. Sal Shorea robusta is the dominant tree species in the area.

Key biodiversity

AVIFAUNA: Lesser Adjutant Leptoptilos javanicus and Pallas’s Fish-Eagle Haliaeetus leucoryphus are the threatened species found in this lake, which also attracts a large number of waterfowl. In the adjoining Tropical Moist Deciduous Forests, White-cheeked Hill-Partridge Arborophila atrogularis, Mountain Bamboo-Partridge Bambusicola fytchii, Blyth’s Kingfisher Alcedo hercules, Blue-throated Barbet Megalaima asiatica, White-throated Bulbul Criniger flaveolus, Grey Peacock Pheasant Polyplectron bicalcaratum are the various biome species of conservation interest.

OTHER KEY FAUNA: Among mammals, we see Slow Loris Nycticebus coucang, Assamese macaque Macaca assamensis, Rhesus macaque M. mulatta, Capped Langur Trachypithecus pileatus, Hoolock gibbon Hylobates hoolock, Dhole or Wild dog Cuon alpinus (occasional), Asiatic Black Bear Ursus thibetanus, Yellow-throated Marten Martes flavigula, Hogbadger Arctonyx collaris, Ferret-badger Melogale sp., Jungle Cat Felis chaus, Leopard Cat Prionailurus bengalensis, Leopard Panthera pardus, Tiger Panthera tigris, Asian Elephant Elephas maximus, Wild Boar Sus scrofa, Sambar Cervus unicolor, Barking Deer Muntiacus muntjak, Serow Naemorhedus sumatraensis (rare), Malayan Giant Squirrel Ratufa bicolor, Irrawaddy or Himalayan Hoary-bellied squirrel Callosciurus pygerythrus, Hoary Bamboo Rat Rhizomys pruinosus, Chinese Porcupine Hystrix brachyura, Chinese Pangolin Manis pentadactyla, and Rufous-tailed Hare Lepus nigricollis ruficaudatus. There are also unconfirmed reports of the Pig-tailed macaque Macaca nemestrina, Stump-tailed macaque M. arctoides and Clouded leopard Neofelis nebulosa (Choudhury 2003).

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
MAIN THREATS: Siltation; Fishing; Felling of trees; Encroachment.

There is a proposal to declare the area a wildlife sanctuary, totaling about 50 sq. km including Chandubi Lake, most of Mayong Hill RF and part of Barduar RF (Choudhury 1989). Like all the wetlands of Assam, Chandubi also faces poaching, extensive fishing, siltation and massive encroachment. If properly protected, Chandubi Lake has great potential to attract thousands of waterfowl. Pallas’s Fish-Eagle is still seen in this lake, which proves that the habitat is still suitable as a waterfowl refuge. Better protection from poaching and illegal fishing would make this IBA a great waterfowl sanctuary.

Acknowledgements
Key contributors: Anwaruddin Choudhury and Kulojyoti Lahkar.


Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Chandubi Lake and adjoining areas. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 07/12/2022.