9th Pakke Paga Hornbill Festival

The 9th Pakke Paga Hornbill Festival (PPHF) will be held from January 18-20, 2024 in Arunachal Pradesh. Declared a state festival, it centers around wildlife conservation, especially hornbills found in the Pakke Tiger Reserve.

Hornbill Species in Focus

The reserve harbors four hornbill species – Oriental Pied, Great Indian, Rufous-necked and the endangered Wreathed Hornbill. The week-long event generates awareness on preserving these iconic birds.

Linking Forest, Birds and People

PPHF also spotlights the role of indigenous Nyishi tribes in protecting hornbills after having earlier hunted them. It forges connections between forests, wildlife and local communities. The Nyishi is the largest tribal group in Arunachal Pradesh. The Nyishi tribe used to hunt hornbills traditionally and utilized their distinctive bills to create ethnic headgear. However, over time the Nyishi transformed into champions protecting the same hornbills that were once targeted.

Festival Origins and Goal

The first PPHF was organized in 2015 with the goal to recognize Nyishi conservation efforts. Beyond promoting hornbill conservation, other key goals of launching the Hornbill Festival were generating alternate livelihood streams for locals and raising nationwide awareness regarding the unique biodiversity found in Pakke Tiger Reserve and adjoining areas.

“Let Our Hornbills Remain”

This year’s theme stresses the critical need to safeguard hornbills for balancing the region’s ecosystems and culture. The onset of deforestation and climate threats lend urgency.

Activities at Upcoming Edition

Key activities lined up include:

  • Bird watching tours
  • Literary competitions
  • Panel discussions
  • Tribal music/dance performances
  • River walks
  • Local cuisine

The activities provide unique glimpses into the area’s natural and ethnic heritage while raising ecological awareness.



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