Sajjad Ali

Year of Award


Document Type

Professional Paper

Degree Type

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Name

Wildlife Biology

Department or School/College

College of Forestry and Conservation

Committee Chair

Daniel H. Pletscher

Commitee Members

Kerry Foresman, Mark Hebblewhite


University of Montana


Pakistan is blessed with a great variety of wild flora and fauna, including a rich diversity of wild Caprinae (sheep and goats) represented by 7 species divided into 12 subspecies. These animals are found in Balochistan and Sindh in the south and the North West Frontier Province (NWFP) and Northern Areas in the north. Markhor is a wild goat which belongs to the family Bovidae and sub family Caprinae. In 1992, it was transferred from Appendix II to Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES). The inclusion of markhor in Appendix I brought an end to the trophy hunting program for markhor which was initiated by the North West Frontier Province Wildlife Department (NWFP WD) in 1983. In 1993, the NWFP WD involved local communities in conservation of wildlife through notifying Community Game Reserve Rules under the Wildlife Act of 1975. In 1997, with special approval of CITES, the NWFP WD launched the community-based markhor trophy hunting program in the Province. Eighty percent of the permit fee is deposited in a Village Conservation Fund (VCF) as an incentive to encourage involvement of local communities in conservation of markhor and other associated wildlife species. This has resulted in a positive change in the attitudes of local people towards wildlife which led to an increase in the population of markhor in community managed conservation areas (CMCA). The markhor conservation program in CMCAs was as effective as in government managed protected areas. Credit for this achievement goes to the NWFP WD for involvement of the local community in conservation of natural resources. In NWFP, markhor face a number of threats that include habitat fragmentation, dependence of local communities on natural resources, unawareness, poaching, and lack of conservation funds making conservation of markhor a challenging task both for the government and local communities. The community-based markhor conservation program in NWFP succeeds due to the economic incentive. Uncertainty prevails about the sustainability of this program because a complete ban on markhor trophy hunting by government and/or non-government conservation organizations could occur. For the long term sustainability of the markhor conservation program, it is essential to explore alternative means of income and to build the capacity of local communities in the field of conservation.



© Copyright 2008 Sajjad Ali