PESHAWAR — Local authorities have auctioned off a permit for trophy hunting of markhor in Chitral for $160,250.
A statement issued by the Wildlife Department said that this was the highest bid offered so far for trophy hunting of Pakistan’s national animal. The statement said that four permits have been sold for the year 2021-2022 that will fetch $575,500 in total.
The second highest bid offered was $155,100, followed by $135,150 for the third permit and $125,100 for the fourth, the statement reads.
Hunting permits are issued annually for various areas, including Gilgit-Baltistan, Tooshi Conservancy in Chitral District, Gehrait Conservancy in Chitral District and Kaigah Conservancy in Kohistan District.
The concept of trophy hunting has produced positive results as the markhor population has increased from 1,500-2,000 in 2001 to 3,500-4,000 in 2021.
Under the trophy hunting programme, local communities receive 80% of the licence fee and the government keeps the rest. The amount varies as licences are issued through a bidding process.
Under the trophy hunting programme, only old and male markhors are shot. Such animals can be identified from their horns, gait and body structure. This programme is now cited as a huge success in biodiversity preservation in Pakistan.
The incentives created through the trophy hunting programme have introduced new ethical standards among the concerned communities that now protect their wild game species as an economic asset.