Tokhü Emong Bird Count Event From Novomber 4 - Eastern Mirror
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Nagaland, Wokha

Tokhü Emong Bird Count event from Novomber 4

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By EMN Updated: Oct 29, 2023 10:00 pm

DIMAPUR — With an aim to celebrate the incredible bird diversity and join the Naga communities and bird lovers to care for biodiversity and endangered habitats in the state, the second edition of Tokhü Emong Bird Count (TEBC) festival will be held from November 4 to the 7th.

The second edition of TEBC is being organised in collaboration with the Wokha Forest Division and the Divisional Management Unit of Nagaland Forest Management Project (NFMP), Wokha district, and Bird Count India. Other partners of the TEBC 2023 included department of School Education, Foundation for Ecological Security (FES), and Eco Warriors Nagaland. The event is powered by eBird India with Nikon as the equipment partner.

It stated that the Practicing Food Sovereignty (PFS) research team from the University of Melbourne, Stockholm University and North Eastern Social Research Centre would also join as research partners.

‘Tokhü Emong’ is the harvest festival of the Lotha community from Nagaland. In the Lotha language, Tokhü refers to feasting and Emong means rest/ halt on an appointed period. Observed in the first week of November, the festival is about celebration, fellowship and reconciliation. It is a period when friends and visitors are invited to celebrate the bountiful harvest and showered with hospitality and food.

“Nagaland is a state with diverse festivals as well as vibrant birdlife. We live in one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots. The Tokhü Emong Bird Count is the first of initiatives where the indigenous communities of the state are encouraged to celebrate their festivals with birds. We invite people to reconnect with nature and help rediscover and document this rich avifauna. Birds are seen everywhere and are excellent indicators of environmental changes,” said Lansothung Lotha, forest range officer, Government of Nagaland.

“The Practicing Food Sovereignty research team is collaborating with TEBC 2023 because this initiative invites us to adopt birds to reflect on indigenous culture, agriculture and what it means to be in a relationship of care with other beings and the land. I believe TEBC allows us to connect and come up with bottom-up approaches that centre indigenous community engagement and participation,” said Dr. Dolly Kikon, anthropologist at the University of Melbourne.

“Birds are excellent ambassadors of nature. There is no other organism that can sing and dance and still be all around us. Their ability to thrive in our surroundings, from urban places to forests, makes them exceptional representatives of the natural world showcasing the adaptability and resilience of wildlife,” said Mittal Gala, project coordinator with Bird Count India at Nature Conservation Foundation.

“Amur Falcons put Nagaland on the world birding map. However, our communities can do more than Amur Falcon conservation. TEBC 2023 is organised to make each one of us feel pride in the nature and birdlife that we have,” said Chenibemo Odyuo, team leader of Nagaland Forest Management Project, Foundation for Ecological Security, Phek, Nagaland.

It stated that the basic activity is to watch and count birds on any/all days from November 4 to the 7th from anywhere in Nagaland for at least 15 minutes and upload bird lists to the bird recording platform eBird (www.ebird.org/india).

It mentioned that the dates of Tokhü Emong Bird Count fall within Bombay Natural History Society’s Sálim Ali Bird Count–a countrywide event. Besides documenting birds, it added that there would be bird walks and online/ in-person talks about birds for interested public, other birders, and school/college students.

TEBC organisers further invited everyone to join and celebrate Nagaland’s bird diversity.

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By EMN Updated: Oct 29, 2023 10:00:09 pm
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