Training Resoops and Ex-armies To Monitoring Remote Camera Traps

News | Posted on 2014-07-25

In a first of its kind, the Ugyen Wangchuck Institute for Conservation and Environment (UWICE), provided training on "how to monitor remote camera traps" to Resoops (Local forester) and Ex-armies.  A total of 33 participants from Royal Manas National Park (RMNP) and Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park (JSWNP) attended a week-long training at UIWCE campus.

The main objective of the training was to train and equip resoops with necessary skills and knowledge required for camera trapping in the field.  UWICE had initiated long term camera trapping exercise in RMNP and JSWNP since 2010 to monitor tiger population and their prey species.

In rugged and mountainous terrain like Bhutan's, camera-trapping exercise is very labour intensive and expensive.  Engaging Resoops and even school leavers in the villages may prove to be an effective way forward.

 Mr. Tshering Tempa, a researcher at UWICE who had been doing camera trapping works in RMNP and JSWNP for last 5 years says "if the long term camera trapping work in JSWNP and RMNP is to succeed, the involvement of resoops and ex-armies is very crucial. Camera trapping exercises also provide seasonal employment opportunities for school drop outs in the villages. This training is very important since it provides them with the necessary skills for camera trapping exercises ".

For most participants, it is their first time attending such a training and they said that it has been an enriching experience for them. Mr. Thukten, who has been working as resoop for last 15 years in RMNP  says “I have accompanied camera trapping teams and worked with them in many occasions.  I thought they were just there to get some pretty pictures of wild animals. After attending this training, I now knew the reasons behind camera trapping. It is beyond just  getting pictures of animals. It is about estimating numbers and monitoring animal and forest health in the long term. Now I can confidently monitor camera traps on regular basis.”

The week-long training comprising of both field practical and theory successfully completed on 24th July with the awarding of certificates to the participants. Resoops and ex-army personnel who serve across the country continue to be key players in the conservation of Bhutan's forests and natural wealth.