Assam villagers vow to protect their ‘pride’: the agile, arboreal, and now endangered Golden Langur

The villagers of Salbari, a hamlet in Assam’s Chirang district, have joined hands with the Forest Department to save the elusive Golden Langur — among the 25 most endangered primates in the world, found only in Assam and Bhutan.

A 23-sq km area has been identified for the “Golden Langur Habitat Conservation” project — a joint effort by New Horizon, a conservation NGO; the Chirang forest division, BTC; the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) and International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW).

Since 2000, the villagers have been protecting the sal bagaan, or the forest of sal trees in their village, through a community initiative under the Joint Forest Management scheme. There are major fines for felling trees, poaching or upsetting the ecological balance of the area. The protection of the green cover led to many Golden Langurs making their home here.

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