Names are an important part of identity. When we give name to something — a place, a thing, or a living being — we immediately form an attachment with it. The ‘place’ or ‘thing’ no longer becomes limited to being an outside entity, but something that holds meaning to us.
Growing up in Nawalparasi, DB Chaudhary knew the birds and animals he saw every day by name in his native language: Tharu. “Knowing their names in a language that I spoke helped me develop a connection with birds, mammals, plants and other wildlife. I was attached to them and that made me care more for them,” says DB Chaudhary.
In the hope that giving names to birds in his local language will urge others around him, too, to care more of birds around them, DB Chaudhary is on a mission to collate and document bird names in local languages – Tharu, Bote, and Musahar – spoken in Nawalparasi. This ongoing project is Chaudhary’s attempt to forge a deeper connection between people and nature. This, he hopes, will strengthen the connection people have with nature and birds, which in turn will help spread more awareness among local communities regarding birds and bolster conservation efforts in the region.