Aparajita Datta

Scientist, Eastern Himalaya

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Aparajita has been involved in research and conservation in Arunachal Pradesh since 1995 and a primary focus of her work has been on hornbills. Her main interests include plant–animal interactions in rainforests, understanding anthropogenic effects on wildlife, and engaging with tribal communities for conservation.


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Forests, weeds and farms

Understanding a shifting cultivation system in the Eastern Himalaya


Hornbill Nest Adoption Program

Saving hornbill homes with communities

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Hornbill survey across North-east India

Survey to assess the status of hornbills in five north-eastern states



Linking rural energy and conservation

Linking rural energy and nature conservation in a tribal village 

Arunachal macaque photo by kripaljyoti mazumdar

Monkey of the deep jungle

Ecology and conservation of Macaca munzala



Pakke Nature Information Centre

A new learning and activity centre for visitors to Pakke Tiger Reserve



Plant-disperser mutualistic networks

Understanding the role of hornbills in plant-disperser networks

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Rats, seeds and rainforest trees

Plant-animal interactions: seed predation and plant demography

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Tracking hornbill movements and seeds

Hornbill ranging, fruit distribution and implications for seed dispersal


Tree phenology and hornbill breeding

Long-term monitoring of trees, hornbill nests and roosts


  • Book Chapter
    In press
    Top-down or bottom-up: the role of the government and local institutions in regulating shifting cultivation in the Upper Siang district, Eastern Himalaya, India (in press)
    Shifting Cultivation and Environmental Change: Indigenous People, Agriculture and Forest Conservation (Ed: Malcolm Cairns), Published by Routledge.
  • Poster
    How Hornbills Breed: Great Hornbills

    PDF, 4.96 KB

    Wreathed Hornbills poster up here: http://ncf-india.org/publications/1100

  • Poster
    How Hornbills Breed: Wreathed Hornbills

    PDF, 2.34 MB

    Great Hornbills poster up here: http://ncf-india.org/publications/1101

  • Journal Article
    Hornbill Watch: A citizen science initiative for Indian hornbills
    Aparajita Datta, Rohit Naniwadekar, Manisha Rao, Ramki Sreenivasan, Vikram Hiresavi
    Indian Birds, 14:65-70

    PDF, 18.4 MB

    Hornbills are conspicuous and well-known birds with nine species occurring in India. While several hornbill species have been studied extensively in some parts of India, there is a knowledge gap about their distribution, population size, and adaptations to rapidly changing habitats. Most research and conservation efforts are often focused on single or few species within protected areas. Hornbill Watch (henceforth, HW) is an online platform created specifically to record public sightings of hornbills from anywhere in India. The idea is to encourage birders, nature enthusiasts, and photographers to share information on hornbill presence, behaviour, and conservation-related issues. The main objective is to generate baseline information using sight records and enable long-term monitoring of these species by encouraging citizen participation. HW was launched in June 2014, and up to February 2017 had received 938 records from 430 contributors across India, from 26 States and three Union Territories. States from where most sightings were reported were Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Assam, and Arunachal Pradesh. Species were reported from both inside (41%), and outside Protected Areas (59%; henceforth, PA). Hornbills were reported from 70 PAs. Fifty-one records of nesting were reported for all species from inside and outside PAs, while 27 records of communal roosting were reported for some species. The data obtained thus far has yielded some useful information and insights,and has the potential for enhancing our understanding of current hornbill distribution patterns, and for identifying important sites for conservation/protection.

  • Report
    Hornbill Nest Adoption Program - 2018 Breeding Season
    HNAP 2018 Report

    PDF, 1.64 MB

  • Report
    Hornbill Watch Report June 2014 to February 2017
    Aparajita Datta, Manisha Rao
    June 2017, www.hornbills.in

    PDF, 1.18 MB

  • Popular Article
    Current Conservation Volume No. 11.4 

    PDF, 2.06 MB

  • Report
    Hornbill Nest Adoption Program - 2017 Breeding Season
    HNAP 2017 Report

    PDF, 1.53 MB

  • Report
    Hornbill Nest Adoption Program - 2016 breeding season
    HNAP 2016 Report

    PDF, 3.74 MB

  • Popular Article
    Unlikely giants of the canopy
    JLR Explore online article, October 1, 2016

    PDF, 2.63 MB


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