IBA criteria met: A1, A2, A4i (2004)
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Area: 20,000 ha
Site description (baseline)
The chapories (=riverine islands and tracts) of the Lohit river starts from Assam-Arunachal Pradesh border near Sadiya and extends eastwards fomring part of 'Assam Plains' Endemic Bird Area. This IBA also includes the entire riverbed of the Lohit, at places more than 10 km wide with sandy and grassy tracts. The area is the floodplains of the Lohit river and the entire area is criss-crossed by numerous channels turning it into a complex of water bodies, riverine islands, grassland and forest. The area has rich assemblage of grassland birds (A. U. Choudhury pers. comm. 2003).
AVIFAUNA: More than 140 species of birds have been listed during general wildlife surveys and hence the total diversity could be more than 300 species including a large number wintering waterfowl (A. U. Choudhury pers. comm. 2003). The only Endangered species confirmed was the Bengal Florican Houbaropsis bengalensis (Choudhury 1996), The White-winged Duck Cairina scutulata was reported and is very likely also but need a confumed sighting. Among Vulnerable species, two species were recorded from the area, the Lesser Adjutant Leptoptilos javanicus and the Swamp Francolin Francolinus gularis (Choudhury 2004). The Spot-billed Pelican Pelecanus philippensis was recorded from just west of this IBA in Assam. There is extensive habitat for potential population of Jerdon's Babbler Chrysomma altirostre and Black-breasted Parrotbill Paradoxomis flavirostris.
In winter, there are large congregations of Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo (often in hundreds), Goosanders Mergus merganser in smaller groups all over, Ibisbill Ibidorhyncha struthersii, and many species of ducks.
OTHER KEY FAUNA: Among major mammals there are Tiger Panthera tigris, Asian Elephant Elephas maximus, the rare Asiatic Wild Buffalo Bubalus amee (=bubalis) (Choudhury 1999) and Hog deer Axis porcinus. The Gangetic Dolphin Platanista gangetica is occasionally seen towards extreme west. The Gharial Gavialis gangeticus has not been reported in recent years.
Key contributor: Anwaruddin Choudhury.
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: The Chapories of Lohit Reserve. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/18059 on 02/06/2023.