Rapid Action Fund ,

Organisation: BirdLife International (Asia) and Biodiversity and Nature Conservation Association (BANCA)

Project title: Conservation of Asian Vultures in Indawgyi Lake Wildlife Sanctuary, Kachin state, Myanmar

Location: Kachin, Myanmar

Project date: January 2022 – January 2023 (ongoing)

Species: White-rumped Vulture Gyps bengalensis, Slender-billed Vulture Gyps tenuirostris, Red-headed Vulture Sarcogyps calvus

Supported by: Fondation Segré

The challenge

Vulture populations have been decimated around Southeast and South Asia through the use of veterinary drugs to treat livestock. While banned in neighbouring vulture range states, the use of diclofenac and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) by local farmers and government veterinary clinics in Myanmar to treat livestock is a severe threat to the remaining vulture populations in Myanmar. The belief that the use of vulture bones as a cure for multiple ailments is an additional threat to these species.  

Three Critically Endangered vultures—White-rumped Vulture, Slender-billed Vulture, and Red-headed Vulture—occur in the Indawgyi Lake Wildlife Sanctuary, a UNESCO biosphere reserve in the Kachin state of Myanmar. Surveys at Indawgyi suggest that vulture populations have declined between 2001 and 2020. Local organisations have initiated awareness campaigns to engage veterinarians, pharmacists and livestock owners about the impacts of NSAIDs on vulture populations.  

The project

In line with the Saving Asia’s Vultures from Extinction (SAVE) Blueprint and Myanmar Vulture Conservation Action Plan 2019-2024, Birdlife International (Asia) and BANCA will improve the understanding of the use of NSAIDs in villages in the Indawgyi landscape, and support advocacy efforts to eliminate the use of NSAIDs which will form the basis of future advocacy efforts to seek a national ban. Through these efforts, vulture-safe zones can be identified to protect these threatened birds of prey.  


Project reports

Project reports will be added here

Photo credit: Wild-CER

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