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The mountain, the man and the herd

Publish Time: 2018-07-17 Author: From: China Tibet Online
  

"I have been shepherding cattle on Pema Mountain for more than 20 years. In the past, every family in the village raised and shepherded cattle , but now, there are only four people in the whole village who do this," 56-year-old Kelrong, who has witnessed the changes to cattle and pastures, said.

Yeri Village, where Kelrong lives, is a microcosm of the many surrounding villages in the area. They originally relied on shepherding for a living, but now, as lifestyles have changed, people have gradually left their herds and returned the pastureland to the snow-capped mountains.

"Yeri and nearby villages are located in the experimental area of the Pema Mountain National Nature Reserve. The experimental area allows for the retention of a certain amount of areas for scientific experiments, eco-tourism, and living of the original inhabitants."

Since the establishment of the Pema Mountain Nature Reserve, local herders have transitioned from burning wood in order to expand pastures to protecting trees and using pastureland in a reasonable way.

In May of this year, Kelrong drove his family's 22 cows to the "Pegye Yilha" pastureland in the Jinni River Valley, where he will spend five months living as a nomad until October, when he will drive the herd back home.

Kelrong's wife takes care of her 80-year-old mother and their six mu (0.4 hectares) of farmland, and the couple also has four children.

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