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Location India, Meghalaya
Central coordinates 92o 27.50' East  25o 9.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A2
Area 16,110 ha
Altitude 100 - 1,000m
Year of IBA assessment 2004

Bombay Natural History Society

Site description The site includes two reserve forests, Norpuh Blocks I and II in the southern part of Jaintia Hills district. The area has some of the finest primary forests remaining in Meghalaya. Block I, established in June 1909, lies west of Lubha, the main river of the area, while Block II, established in March 1918, is eastward of the river. Both are near the India-Bangladesh international boundary. Block II is also contiguous with Barail IBA site of Assam. The terrain is rugged, with steep slopes, deep gorges and narrow valleys. Other major rivers are Prang (Hari) and Apha. Although these forests are on National Highway-44, and can be reached easily, accessibility to the interior areas is very difficult because of the extremely rugged terrain and steep slopes and lack of roads to the interior. The climate of Norpuh (also spelled as Narpuh) forests is tropical monsoon type, with a hot and wet summer, and a cool and drier winter. The area often receives very heavy rainfall, may be more than 6,000 mm, from the southwest monsoon. In the lower warmer areas, Cachar Tropical Evergreen Forest is found, whereas in the higher cooler areas, Khasi Subtropical Hill Forest is seen (Champion and Seth 1968). There are grassy areas in the forest openings and in abandoned jhums. The area is known for its rich biodiversity but no systematic work has been done. The IBA site is likely to yield species new to science, especially among amphibians, reptiles, invertebrates and plants.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Rufous-necked Hornbill Aceros nipalensis resident  2004  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Yellow-vented Warbler Phylloscopus cantator 2004  present  A2  Least Concern 
Tawny-breasted Wren-babbler Spelaeornis longicaudatus resident  2004  present  A1, A2  Vulnerable 
Grey Sibia Heterophasia gracilis 2004  present  A2  Least Concern 
White-naped Yuhina Yuhina bakeri 2004  present  A2  Least Concern 


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest   -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
Notes: Agriculture; Cash crop (Arecanut)
forestry -
Notes: Forest

Acknowledgements Key contributors: Kulojyoti Lahkar and Anwaruddin Choudhury.


Ali, S. and Ripley, S. D. (1987) Compact Handbook of the Birds of India and Pakistan (Second Edition). Oxford University Press, Delhi.

BirdLife International (undated) Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in Asia: Project briefing book. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K., unpublished.

BirdLife International (2001) Threatened Birds of Asia: The BirdLife International Red Data Book. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

Champion, H. G. and Seth, S. K. (1968) A Revised Survey of the Forest types of India. Government of India, New Delhi.

Choudhury, A. U. (1998) A survey of primates in the Jaintia Hills. America Society of Primatology Bulletin 22(3): 8 -9.

Choudhury, A. U. (1999) Wildlife in Jaintia Hills district of Meghalaya with a proposal for a national park/wildlife sanctuary. Interim Report. The Rhino Foundation for Nature in NE India, Guwahati. Pp 4.

Lahkar, K. (2002) Birds of Upper Shillong, Norpuh, Umiam and Mawphlang. Unpublished Report to the Bombay Natural History Society. Mumbai. Pp 41. + 2 maps.

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: Norpuh Reserve Forests. Downloaded from on 21/10/2014

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