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3 Jul 2012 | Blog

Diverse livelihood means in Gatlang, Rasuwa

Bikram Manandhar

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Recently we has a field visit to Gatlang, (upstream of Gandaki River Basin, HI-AWARE study site) located in the western part of Rasuwa district, outside Langtang National Park, at an average altitude of 2238 metres. The village, consisting of 400 households, is almost exclusively inhabited by Tamangs. The compact settlement comprises traditional Tamang farmhouses, i.e. two-storied stone-wood constructions with wooden roofs and carved windows, which had been completely destroyed by the Gorkha earthquake. Some people have managed to cover their roofs with galvanized sheets in order to protect what is left of their homes. Meanwhile, the people are living in temporary shelters, often around their original settlement.

Agriculture is the main source of livelihood in Gatlang. The major crops grown include maize, finger millet, barley, buckwheat, potato, beans, black lentils, and vegetables. The current settlement and upper Gatlang are suitable for growing potatoes and beans whereas the lower lands are suitable for millet, barley, and maize. Potatoes are sown in March and harvested in August while beans are sown in August and harvested in December. In the lowlands, millet is sown in June/July and harvested in December. Maize is sown in March and harvested in September/October. Some villagers grow apples, peaches, and plums as well.

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