Nepali Environmental Vocabulary

Nepal is a country rich in environmental history and leadership. It is home to a plethora of wildlife species, including the endangered Greater One Horned Rhino, Asiatic Elephant, and Royal Bengal tiger. These animals hold cultural and religious significance to many ethnic and religious groups of Nepal. Nepal is a leader and the blueprint for Community Forestry, where local user groups, making up 40% of Nepal’s population manage forested spaces for themselves. Below is a list of environmental related vocabulary and pronunciations, including linked voice recordings. Enjoy learning some “jungali” vocabulary.


वन्यजन्तु – banya-jantu – wildlife

बिरुवा – biruwa – seedling/sapling

वन – ban – forest

सामुदायिक वन – samudayik ban – community forest

जंगली – jangali – wild

रूख – rookh – tree

हिमाल – himal – mountain (snow-capped)

पहाड – pahad – hills

घाँस – ghas – grass (nasal on a)

फूल – phool– flower

हात्ती – haatti – elephant (elephants are the living God Ganesha, the child of Shiva and Parvati)

गैंडा – gaida – rhino (nasal on ai)

माछा – machha – fish

बाघ – bagh – tiger (tigers are the national symbol of Nepal. The Goddess Durga, the Hindu protectress, is carried by tiger. Colloquially, many people will call all wild cats ‘bagh’, so one may need to ask for clarification.)

चितुवा – chee-tu-wa – leopard

हिउँ चितुवा – Hee-un chee-tu-wa – snow leopard (nasal on u)

धुवाँसो चितुवा –dhuwaso chee-tu-wa – clouded leopard (nasal on wa)

भालु – bhaloo – bear

ब्वाँसो – bwaso – wolf (nasal on wa)

मृग – mriga/milga – deer

बोदेल – boh-del – wild boar

बाँदर – badar – monkey (nasal on ba)

गोही – go-hee – crocodile

चरा – chara – bird

किरा – kira – insect

बासस्थान – basasthan – habitat

प्रजाती – prajaati – species

जनावर – janawar – animal

लुकी चिपी जनावर – looki chippi janawar – elusive animal

राष्ट्रिय निकुञ्ज – rastriya nikkunja – national park

संरक्षित क्षेत्र – sanrascheet chhetra – conservation/protected area

खतरामा परेको जानावर – khatarama pareko janawar – endangered animal

Practice your knowledge below! Type the English translation to the Nepali environmental word:



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