|Central coordinates||92o 23.30' East 26o 38.30' North|
|IBA criteria||A1, A4ii|
|Altitude||40 - 50m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2004|
Site description Orang National Park is well known as an important habitat the Indian One-horned Rhinoceros Rhinoceros unicornis. The Park lies 18 km off the national highway from Orang town and 15 km off the highway from Dhansirimukh town. The distance from Guwahati to Orang is 140 km. The Park is situated on the northern bank of the Brahmaputra river. The Pachnoi and Dhansiri rivers flow along its eastern and western boundaries respectively. Both these rivers are tributaries of the Brahmaputra. The terrain is flat, being the floodplain of these rivers. Two distinct alluvial terraces are found: the lower Orang of more recent origin along the river Brahmaputra and the older upper Orang to its north, separated by a high bank traversing the National Park from east to west. Orang was earlier a pure alluvial grassland, probably maintained by grazing and fire by villagers. In 1915, it was declared a Game Reserve. The villagers deserted the area due to an epidemic. In 1932, plantation of fast growing local species such as Albizzia procera and Lagerstroemia flosreginae was started and some parts of the Reserve were denotified in 1928 to settle farmers from the erstwhile East Bengal under the Grow-More-Food programme. Intensive plantation was started in 1962. Along with the earlier planted local species, Dalbergia sissoo, Acacia catechu, Tectona grandis, Artocarpus chaplasha, Terminalia spp., Gmelina arborea and Bombax ceiba were planted. In 1969, Professional Grazing Reserve (PGR) areas east of the River Pachnoi were included in the Game Reserve. Mainly established to save the highly endangered Rhinoceros, the grasslands of the Park also support healthy populations of the Swamp Francolin Francolinus gularis and Bengal Florican Houbaropsis bengalensis. Lesser Adjutant Leptoptilos javanicus and Pallas’s Fish-Eagle Haliaeetus leucoryphus nest in the Park (Rahmani et al. 1990). There is also a recent record of sighting of the Bristled Grass-Warbler Chaetornis striatus (Choudhury 2000). At one time, Orang was one of the finest representatives of natural wet, alluvial grasslands of the floodplains of the Brahmaputra river (much like Kaziranga). Even now, more than 60% of the Park is under grasses such as Arundo donax, Imperata cylindrica, Saccharum spp., Cynodon dactylon, Phragmites karka and Andropogon spp. Natural forest constitutes only 2.6%, while planted forest covers 13.6% of this Park. Waterbodies (beels) and swamps constitute about 12% of the area.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Swamp Francolin Francolinus gularis||resident||2004||present||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Baer's Pochard Aythya baeri||winter||2004||present||-||A1||Critically Endangered|
|Lesser Adjutant Leptoptilos javanicus||resident||2004||present||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Greater Adjutant Leptoptilos dubius||breeding||2004||present||-||A1||Endangered|
|Spot-billed Pelican Pelecanus philippensis||resident||2004||present||-||A1||Near Threatened|
|White-rumped Vulture Gyps bengalensis||non-breeding||2004||present||-||A1||Critically Endangered|
|Slender-billed Vulture Gyps tenuirostris||non-breeding||2004||present||-||A1||Critically Endangered|
|Pallas's Fish-eagle Haliaeetus leucoryphus||resident||2004||present||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Bengal Florican Houbaropsis bengalensis||resident||2004||present||-||A1||Critically Endangered|
|Bristled Grassbird Chaetornis striata||resident||2004||present||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Yellow Weaver Ploceus megarhynchus||resident||2004||present||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Protected area||Designation||Area (ha)||Relationship with IBA||Overlap with IBA (ha)|
|Orang||National Park||7,881||is identical to site||7,881|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|nature conservation and research||-|
|Notes: Tourism and recreation|
Acknowledgements Key contributors: Bhupen Talukdar, Anwaruddin Choudhury and Asad R. Rahmani.
Ahmed, M. F. (2002) Amphibians of Northeast India. The Rhino Foundation for nature in NE India Newsletter 4: 15-16.
BirdLife International (2003) Saving Asia’s Threatened Birds: A Guide for Government and Civil Society. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.
Choudhury, A. U. (2000) The Birds of Assam. Gibbon Books & WWFIndia NE Region, Guwahati.
Rahmani, A. R., Narayan, G., Rosalind, L. and Sankaran, R. (1990) Status of the Bengal Florican in India. In: Status and Ecology of the Lesser and Bengal Floricans, with reports on Jerdon’s Courser and Mountain Quail. Final Report. Bombay Natural History Society. Pp. 55-78.
Talukdar, B. N. and Sharma, P. (1995) Checklist of the Birds of Orang Wildlife Sanctuary. Privately distributed. Guwahati.
Stattersfield, A. J., Crosby, M. J., Long, A. J. and Wege, D. C. (1998) Endemic Bird Areas of the World: Priorities for Biodiversity Conservation. BirdLife Conservation Series No. 7. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Orang National Park. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 10/07/2014
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