Field trip to Khonoma and Dzulekie

Alder based agriculture and Tragopan sanctuary

24th Sept 2013

Field trip to Khonoma and Dzulekie

Khonoma is an Angami tribe’s village located in the western part of Kohima district and about 20 km awayfrom Kohima, the capital of Nagaland. The village is popularly known for its environmental conscious community with proper sanitation and clean environment thus christened as Green Village.

The village is also known for its typical agriculture system popularly known as Alder based jhum cultivation. It is a unique and sustainable form of jhum, based on alder tree with a cycle of about 4-6 years. During cultivation, the trees are not felled but pollarded at certain height of about 7-8 ft above ground surface where some of these trees are said to be more than 200 years old. The cleared fields are cropped for 2 consecutive years and left fallow for about 2-4 years. Rich agro-biodiversity is maintained in these fields growing as many as 30-45 number of primary and supplementary crops, which ensure food security and provides sustenance for family needs

Protection and conservation of Blyth’s Tragopan tragopanblythiiwhich is the State Bird of Nagaland was initiated by the community – KNCTS (Khonoma Nature Conservation and Tragopan Sanctuary) way back in 1997. The sanctuary is located in the community land which adjoins the larger landscape of Mt. Japfu mountain range. Besides Tragopan, this sanctuary is also a habitat for many other rare and endangered Avi fauna species. The community conserve area (CCA) of Khonoma village which shares a part of Mt. Japfu mountain range is designated as Important Bird Area (IBA).

Trip expected outcome:

  • On field learning of diverse agronomical crops in alder based jhum
  • Community logic for short jhum cycle
  • Man-Animal conflict out of CCA (?) Measures adopted for conflict resolution (?)
  • Close encounter with tragopan birds/animal during short trek to conservation forest area – buffer zone only

# Field itinerary (tentative):

  • 0800 Hrs : Depart Kohima
  • 0900 Hrs : Arrive Khonoma Green village
  • 0930 Hrs : Arrive Alder based jhum sites & interaction with farmers
  • 1030 Hrs : Arrive Rest camp (tea/cold drinks)
  • 1100 Hrs : Trek to buffer zone forest (Tragopan Sanctuary)
  • 1300 Hrs : Back to green village (community interaction, overview of Khonoma watershed from view point)
  • 1330 Hrs : Lunch at Khonoma village
  • 1430 Hrs : Back to Kohima
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