Dragon­fly named in hon­our of His Royal High­ness The Gyalsey Jigme Nam­gyel Wangchuck

Bhutan Times - - Home - Sonam Peljore

Anew species of dragon­fly have been named in honor of His Royal High­ness The Gyalsey, Jigme Nam­gyel Wangchuck as a sym­bol of ap­pre­ci­a­tion and grat­i­tude for the ex­traor­di­nary lead­er­ship of Bhutan in bio­di­ver­sity and en­vi­ron­men­tal con­ser­va­tion The English name of the species is Gyalsey Emer­ald Spread­wing. The emer­ald refers to its bright green colour while spread­wing refers to its habit of rest­ing with the wings out­spread.

The new species was found in 2015 at a crys­tal clear brook dur­ing a joint Bhutanese-Dutch ex­pe­di­tion in Trongsa District. While Bhutan is in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned for its rich bio­di­ver­sity, it is still home to nu­mer­ous species that are largely un­known or poorly known. It is how­ever rare that an un­de­scribed species as large and beau­ti­ful as the Gyalsey Emer­ald Spread­wing is found. The young stages of drag­on­flies live in the wa­ter and they are de­pen­dent on good wa­ter qual­ity be­cause of which they are of­ten called guardians of wa­ter­sheds. The new species be­longs to a group which is re­stricted to the moun­tains of Asia. Cur­rently, 113 species of drag­on­flies are con­firmed to be found in Bhutan out of more than 150 es­ti­mated species.

The field work which led to the dis­cov­ery of the new species was part of the project for the “Es­tab­lish­ment of a knowl­edge base for in­ver­te­brates in Bhutan and the in­sti­tu­tional and hu­man ca­pac­i­ties” funded by Bhutan Trust Fund for En­vi­ron­ment and Con­ser­va­tion (BTFEC). This project is spear­headed and co­or­di­nated by the Na­tional Bio­di­ver­sity Cen­tre (NBC), Bhutan in close co­op­er­a­tion with Sherubtse Col­lege, Col­lege of Nat­u­ral Re­sources, Ugyen Wangchuck In­sti­tute of Con­ser­va­tion and En­vi­ron­ment (UWICE) and the Na­tional Plant Pro­tec­tion Cen­ter. The Bhutanese sci­en­tists work to­gether with sci­en­tists from Nat­u­ralis, the Bio­di­ver­sity Cen­ter of the Nether­lands.

The NBC as the co­or­di­nat­ing agency for bio­di­ver­sity in the coun­try had ini­ti­ated this project on in­ver­te­brates to fill in the bio­di­ver­sity knowl­edge gap in the coun­try.

The cer­e­mony will be held to­day coin­cid­ing with the First Birth An­niver­sary of His Royal High­ness The Gyalsey at the Na­tional Bio­di­ver­sity Cen­tre in Ser­bithang

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