Nepal’s wetalnds are unique, hotspots and gene treasure, so regarded as Biological Supermarket. Twenty-five percent of Nepal’s plants species reported are found in wetlands that also includes about 26 endemic wetlands species. Begonia tribenensis is the monospecies reported to occur in the Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve. Endemic Kobresia fissiglumis, K. gandakiensis, Pedicularis poluninii, and P. pseudoregelina are found in Gokyo; Endemic bryophyte Sphagnum nepalense in Mai Pokhari; and wild cultivars of rice (Oryza nivara, O. granulata, O. officinalis and O.rufipogon and 2 species of wild relatives of rice-Hygrorhyza aristata and Leersia hexandra are in wetlands. The Terai wetlands alone banks genes of 318 species of plants. Of 123 globally threatened fauna of Nepal, the genes of 42 species (34 percent) are maintained in the freshwater. Seventeen of 20 endemic vertebrates in Nepal are reported from the wetlands. A twenty five percent (193 spp) of birds, including 12 species under the Red List, are preserved in wetlands. Nepal’s total of 185 species of fishes, 27 species is reported to be nationally threatened. Of 8 endemic fishes, 3 species of Schizothorax are only found in Rara lake. Endangered Sahar (Tot putitora), Jalkapoor (Clupisoma garuwa, Ompak bimaculatus); Vulnerable Katle (Neolissocheilus hexagonolepis), Patharchatti (Chagunius chagunio), Zebra (Danio rerio), Asala (Schizothorax richardsonii), Bucche Asala (S. plagiostomus), Chuche Asala (Schizothoraicthys progastus), Rajabam (Anguilla bengalensis); and 17 species listed as Rare.
While considering wetlands the backbone of socio-ecological prosperity, CODEFUND pays the highest attention for the biological specimens that have treasured this land.
Nepal holds globally important 10 wetlands under the Ramsar heritage. The banner photo is the Himalayan newt reported from the Maipokhari (Ramsar) of Ilam district, eastern Nepal.