2021
  • Non-ICIMOD publication

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Setting the mountain ablaze? The Royal Highland Festival in Bhutan from the semi-nomads’ perspective

  • Jigme Wangdi
  • Tashi Dorji
  • Kesang Wangchuk
  • Summary

A study was conducted to assess the effects of the Royal Highland Festival (RHF) from the perspective of yak herders in Laya, Bhutan. Sixty-six respondents were randomly selected from amongst the domicile herders who were regular visitors to the festival. Tourists, both international and domestic, were the major contributors to the income of yak herders during the festival. Livestock products were the biggest income earner, followed by homestays. Herders were encouraged to produce more quantities of livestock products and desired to diversify yak products. Animal shows were adequate and encouraged breed improvement. However, yak herders expressed concerns over the lack of skills and knowledge for yak product diversification and management of festival waste. Herders felt the need to shift the festival venue to benefit highlanders in other areas of Bhutan. The study recommends authorities to consider imparting skills to Laya communities on developing diverse and value-added yak products. Effective management of festival wastes calls for a farsighted plan.

  • Journal:
    Pastoralism: Research, Policy and Practice
  • Language:
    English
  • Published Year:
    2021
  • External Link:
    External link (open access)