Nepal is a diverse hot spot for birds, hosting about 8% of the total number of species on the planet, altogether 646 species. Some of the diversity can be explained by the elevation differences – from 80 m above sea level in the Terai to Nepal’s eight 8,000+ m Himalayan peaks. Nepal is also the overlapping zone between southern and northern species and hosts many northern migratory birds as well.
Lastly, located in the Central Himalayas with the dry western part and the tropical, humid eastern part, Nepal is where South-East Asian and Eurasian birds meet. A particular overlapping hotspot zone for birds and also butterflies is the three Mai River valleys in far eastern Nepal. Birds are always present in the Nepalese landscapes, and a pair of binoculars will be useful and a delight whether you are a keen bird watcher or not.
The many wetlands, such as moors, bow lakes, ponds, tanks and riverine areas in the Terai are good places to see birdlife in Nepal during all seasons. The national parks and other areas with good natural forests and intact habitats all have a profusion of birds.
Many foreign and national ornithological associations organise bird-watching trips, treks and expeditions in Nepal. Regular tours to Chitwan and Koshi Tappu focus on migratory birds. Godawari and Pulchowk Hill in Kathmandu are bird hotspots, and one-day excursions are organised regularly. Langtang and other mountain national parks are frequently featured as birding destinations combined with trekking. Annapurna and Chitwan bird watching tours are also available.