Status and distribution of endemic and threatened birds of the Eastern Himalaya in Sikkim, India

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B.K. Acharya
L. Vijayan


Due to their restricted distribution range and dwindling population endemic and threatened species need considerable attention from ecologists. Sikkim is a part of the Eastern Himalayas Endemic Bird Area that represents high concentrations of globally threatened species. This study collected information on endemic and threatened birds of Sikkim using point count method. The number of species and their density at five elevation zones were calculated. Out of 10 species endemic to Sikkim, five were recorded during the present study. These species were restricted to one to three habitats but densities varied among the habitats. Similarly, out of 17 threatened and 10 near-threatened species of birds that occur in Sikkim, we could observe only three species. The results show that these birds are rare or their occurrence is doubtful in recent years. The principal threat to birds in the state appears to be loss of breeding habitat. Species-specific studies focusing on population status, habitat requirements and assessment of threats are necessary for the execution of conservation measures.

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How to Cite
Acharya, B. and Vijayan, L. 2010. Status and distribution of endemic and threatened birds of the Eastern Himalaya in Sikkim, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa. 2, 2 (Feb. 2010), 685–689. DOI:
Author Biographies

B.K. Acharya

Bhoj Kumar Acharya completed PhD from Sálim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History, Coimbatore, India in 2008. Currently he is an Assistant Professor in Sikkim. His research focuses pattern in diversity and distribution of birds, butterflies and plants in the Himalayan elevation gradient.

L. Vijayan

Lalitha Vijayan is Senior Principal Scientist at SACON, Coimbatore. She has expertise on avian biology and conservation ecology with experience of working on birds and their habitats for the last three decades. Her recent research focus is on community ecology of birds and conservation of threatened birds in India.