This site is a large area c. 2,00,000 ha in the Lower Subansiri district around Kolo Riang, Sarli and Damin areas. As the altitude varies from 800 m to 5,000 m, four biome types are found in this area. Tropical evergreen and semi-evergreen forests usually occur in the lower areas, mainly below 900 m. Here, closed canopy forests with many storeys are seen. Subtropical forests occur from 900 m to 1,800 m, temperate forests between 1,800 m and 3,500 m, sub-alpine from 3,500 m to 4,300 m, and alpine meadows from 3,700 m to 5,500 m (Kumar and Singh 1999).
AVIFAUNA: A detailed checklist of the birds of this IBA is not available. However, Singh (1994) and Kumar and Singh (1999) have conducted general surveys of this and other areas of Arunachal Pradesh.
A significant discovery from this area is a new monal species of Lophophorus. The males of the new monal appeared very similar to the male of Sclater’s Monal Lophophorus sclateri, except for the completely white tail in the former. The new monal was sighted on nine occasions (5 males, 13 females and 1 subadult) in the Sarli circle of Lower Subansiri district. All sightings were made in the alpine meadows between 3,900 m and 4,200 m (Kumar and Singh 1999). Feathers of this taxon were found in Tali and Damin, indicating a wide distribution in this area (Kumar and Singh 1999).
In the upper reaches of Lower Subansiri district, beside the new taxon of monal pheasant, Kumar and Singh (1999) have recorded the following pheasants: Temminck’s Tragopan Tragopan temminckii, Blood Pheasant Ithaginis cruentus and Black-brested Kaleej Lophura leucomelanos lathami.
Kumar and Singh (1999) found feathers of the Rufous-necked Hornbill Aceros nipalensis near Kolo Riang at an altitude of 1,000 m. There is a stray record of Black-necked Crane in Kolo Riang (Choudhury 2002).
This site falls in the Eastern Himalayas Endemic Bird Area (EBA) (Stattersfield et al. 1998), in which 21 species are considered as Restricted Range. Nine Restricted Range species are found here but some need further confirmation. The new monal taxon is confined to a narrow altitudinal belt in Arunachal Pradesh (Kumar and Singh 1999), so it would also qualify for Restricted Range status.
As the altitude of this IBA varies from 800 to 5,000 m, four biomes are represented here: Biome-5 (Eurasian High Montane- Alpine and Tibetan) above c. 3,600 m; Biome-7 (Sino-Himalayan Temperate Forest,) between c. 1,800 m to 3,600 m; Biome-8 (Sino-Himalayan Subtropical Forest,) between c. 1,000 m to 2,000 m; and Biome-9 (Indo-Chinese Tropical Moist Forest,) below 1,000 m. Studies on birds are required to find out how many Biome-restricted species are found in this IBA. As the habitat is intact in many parts of this IBA, significant populations of many Biome-restricted species are likely to be present. Therefore, we feel that this IBA perfectly fits A3 criteria also.
OTHER KEY FAUNA: There are confirmed records of Tiger Panthera tigris and Leopard P. pardus in Sarli and Damin areas (Kumar and Singh 1999). Other larger mammals found in this IBA are the Asiatic Black Bear Ursus thibetanus, Takin Budorcas taxicolor, Serow Nemorhaedus sumatraensis, Goral Nemorhaedus goral and Musk Deer Moschus chrysogaster. Sambar Cervus unicolor and Barking Deer Muntiacus muntjak are reported from the lower region.
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Koloriang - Sarli - Damin area. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 19/02/2020.