Butterflies in Bhutan

Just reading this story makes me wish I’d stayed forever in Mongar this fall….And oh, the pictures:

Striped_Tiger_butterfly_bhutan
Excerpt:

Bhutan has made a well-deserved place for itself on the biodiversity map; it ranks in the top 10% of countries in terms of species richness per area unit. This natural endowment is under no threat from a government committed to conservation of the natural environment. In fact, in Bhutan, 26% of the country is protected land, with another 9% designated as biological corridors that connect the protected areas. The government has also decided to leave 60% of the country under forest cover.

Given this green splendour, birds love Bhutan and ornithologists therefore consider it a prime location for catching glimpses of a long list of feathered species. In fact, the Kingdom of Bhutan sits at the heart of 221 official ‘endemic bird areas’ and the number of bird species identified in Bhutan is 670… and counting.

Even for travellers not lured in by winged friends, the lush ecosystems of Bhutan promises plenty of wildlife spotting. Snow leopards and Bengal tigers reside in the high-elevation forests, and the southern tropical jungles are home to the clouded leopard, one-horned rhinoceros, elephants and a rare primate unique to Bhutan and near environs – the golden langur.

Fluttering Beauty

Bhutan is also a fabled haven for butterflies. There are between 90 and 120 species of butterfly in Bhutan; approximately 28 of these are endemic to the eastern Himalayas. For lepidopterists, little can rival the enchantment of a flittering butterfly rising and falling among the lush plant life of Bhutan.”

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