The beaches of Pakistan are some of the most important nesting grounds for the Green turtles. Each year thousands of female Green turtles come to the beaches of Hawksbay and Sandspit off the coast of Karachi to lay their eggs.
Since the 1908's WWF-Pakistan is working together with the Sind Wildlife Department on a project for safe release of turtle hatchlings to the Arabian sea. Green turtle nests are laid throughout the year, with most nests occurring between July and December. The egg are carefully kept in closed enclosures and released after the hatchlings are hatched.
Lahore Wildlife Park * 450-acre lake to be home to water birds
By Shoaib Ahmed
LAHORE: Work on lion and tiger safaris at the Lahore Wildlife Park (LWP) will be completed by the end of this month, Raja Javed, Lahore zoo director, told Daily Times on Saturday. “From July, wildlife enthusiasts can visit these safaris in their own vehicles,” he said.
He said that the animals for the safaris would be brought from the Lahore and Bahawalpur zoos. He said that next year, the construction of an African block, Indus plains area and camping huts would be completed and safaris to see elephants, rhinos, bears and deer would be opened. He said that giraffes, zebras, monkeys, and peacocks would roam free in the park.
Javed said that the bird aviary at the LWP, which is 30 kilometres outside Lahore along the Raiwind Road, would be ready by the 30th. He said that a 450-acre lake had been built at the park. “The lake has four islands: three for the public and one for water birds.” The water birds’ island is covered with thick trees to create a natural habitat for the birds, which will be released in the water in the next few weeks, he said. He said that the lake was being beautified at present.
Javed said that the safaris would cover 80 acres and the bird aviary would be on 80,000 square feet. The aviary will have a net-fence at the top to contain the birds, he said.
The LPW was established in 1982 and was handed over to the Wildlife Department in 1988 by the Forest Department. Currently, the park has black deer, Chankara deer, monkeys, lions and peacocks.
He said that the objective of the park was to house indigenous wildlife, captive breeding of important wild animals and birds and to provide recreational facilities to local and foreign tourists.
Javed said that the park had exotic plants such as tut, sukh-chen, arjan, jaman, siml, kachnar, shisham amaltas, bottlebrush, bougunwalia and roses.
In Pakistan, wildlife is treated as a provincial rather than a federal matter. There are four provinces, each having its own wildlife department headed by a minister. Wildlife habitats are under the jurisdiction of the forest departments of each province. There are six separate laws that pertain to wildlife, most of which date to the mid-1970s, with only one amendment in 1990. This legislation has no direct relationship with CITES, and when import or export takes place, the CITES certificate is issued by an agency of the federal Ministry of Environment, the National Council for Conservation of Wildlife. There is no separate zoo legislation as such. However, in order to start a zoo in, for example, Punjab Province, permission from the provincial wildlife
department is required, as is a license fee of 2,000 rupees per animal. There are penalties for keeping wild animals illegally, ranging from confiscation of the animals to substantial fines and imprisonment of up to six months.
Zoos may capture animals from the wild in Pakistan, but they may do so only for research purposes and only with special permission from the head of the wildlife department. There are no standards for exhibition of animals or inspections although there is animal welfare legislation. Pakistan does not have a specific Zoo Act or Policy nor any legislation about captive wild animals, but there is good legislation about wildlife in all the four provinces, that is, in Azad Kashmir, in Northern Areas and in Federal Territory of Islamabad. The basic outline of legislation is about the same with a few differences according to local conditions, especially in
the Rules framed under the Act called Punjab wildlife (Protection, Preservation, Conservation and Management) Act 1974, and the Rules framed thereunder 1975 (Annexure-1).
Recently six major ungulate species viz., Nilgai (Boselaphus tragocamelus), Hog deer (Axis porcinus), Axis deer (Axis axis), Chinkara (Gazella bennettii), Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra), and Punjab Urial (Ovis orientalis punjabiensis) were shifted from Schedule III (Protected animals and birds) to Schedule II allowing their captive breeding in the Private Sector. Relevant notification and rules are also attached as Annexure –2.
Lahore Zoo is a semi-autonomous organization, so far being run following a constitution framed in 1969. With the changing circumstances, the Constitution has been revised and may be adopted shortly. A new Zoo is envisioned at Faisalabad for which a Constitution has been formulated. A Zoo in Punjab, Bahawalpur Zoo is a Government Organization, and all the Government Policies/ Administrative norms apply to it. A network of 22 Captive Breeding Centres has been established in the Punjab province. These are again Government Organizations and run on the pattern of Bahawalpur Zoo.
‘CITES’ as such has not been mentioned in the Punjab Wildlife Act but as signatories to the Convention, Pakistan follows the dictates. All the animals or animal products to be exported or imported have to obtain a licence from the National Council for the Conservation of Wildlife, an organization in the Federal Ministry of Environment, Local Government and Rural Development. While issuing such licences CITES Schedules are duly consulted.
Establishment of a ‘Zoo’ in the private sector is allowed in Sindh province only. Legislation is being framed in other provinces. Some animal collections are being maintained by interested individuals, institutions, without obtaining permission from the Department and these are usually ignored in the absence of a specific legislation.
There is no bar on starting a Zoo for anyone who fulfils the criteria, once it is allowed by the Government. Any one who applies for a Permit will get it on the payment of prescribed fee.
Applications have to be filed for obtaining permission to keep the animals in captivity. Penalties prescribed in legislation for illegal hunting or capturing of animals are/can be imposed. This information was taken from correspondence with the Office of the Director General, Wildlife & Parks, Punjab, Lahore.
Pakistan has 14 zoos of which 10 are government and 4 are private, and about 22 wild animal breeding centers. The zoos are listed below with government zoos starred *.
For detail information on Zoos and Wildlife Breeding Centers in Pakistan, click on the list highlighted in Green:
Jungle Kingdom, Rawalpindi
Karachi Zoo* (New)
Landhi Korangi Zoo, Karachi
Karachi Safari Park*
Clifton Aquarium, Karachi*
Jallo Park, Lahore*
Murree Wildlife Park, Murree*
Loi bher Wildlife Park, Rawalpindi/Islamabad*
Wildlife Breeding Centers of Punjab
Attock Wildlife Park
Bahawalnagar Wildlife Park
Bhagat Wildlife Park
D. G. Khan Wildlife Park
Faisalabad, PWRI, Breeding Centre
Islamabad, Saidpur Hatchery
Kamalia Wildlife Park
Khanewal, Pirawala Wildlife Park
Khanewal, Pirawala Breeding Centre
Khushab, Sodhi Enclosure
Lawrancepur, Breeding Centre
R. Y. Khan Wildlife Park
Sulemanki Wildlife Park
Vehari Wildlife Park
Woodland Wildlife Park
Rawat Breeding Centre, Rawalpindi
Zoos in Sindh -- perhaps 6 private zoos in Sindh
Government breeding centres -- 22
Total = possibly as many as 40 captive wild animal facilities in Pakistan in August 2000
The Leopards in Pakistan are mainly found in the highlands of Baluchistan and Sind, and the mountain forests of Punjab, N.W.F.P and Azad Kashmir. The leopard is found in the Kirthar Mountain Range of Sind and the Toba Kakar, the Mekran and the Sulaiman Range of Baluchistan. In the northern mountanious region it is found in the Murree Hills, Swat Kohistan, Dir, Chitral, Abbotabad and Lower Gilgit. It is also found in the Kaghan valley and the Margalla Hills. In Azad Kaashmir it is found around the hill ranges of Muzaffarabad and the Neelum Valley. Its survival in the Salt Range in Punjab is not clear, though they still do exist in very small numbers. The leopard sparsely inhabits the Kala Chita hills as well.
Snow Leopard or Ounce
( Uncia Uncia )
Local name: Barfani Chita (Urdu), Ikar (Balti: Baltistan)
In Pakistan the Snow Leopard is found in the high mountains of the Karakoram and the Hindukush. There are mainly found in Baltistan, Chitral, Gilgit, Upper Swat Valley, the Slopes of Nanga Parbat, Khunjerab National Park and the Chitral Gol National Park. The total population of the snow leopards in Pakistan is 100-200 ( IUCN's Cats Specialist Group).
( Acinonyx Jubatus Venaticus )
Local name: Yeoz (Brahui: Baluchistan) , Gurk (Mekrani: Baluchistan)
It was long thought that Asiatic cheetahs were extinct in the Indian sub-continent. However there is increasing evidence that there are still few cheetahs found in south western Baluchistan along the Iranian border. During this decade there have been some sightings in Kharan district of Baluchistan and on some ocassions fresh tracks have been seen. Recently, four cheetah skins believed to be of the Asiatic cheetah have materialized from Baluchistan (Nautra magazine: WWF-Pakistan). One was shot two years ago (1996-97) 50 km from the Iranian border, south of Chagai, and the skin was presented to an army general.hno:
In Pakistan the Eurasian Lynx is found in remote mountanious regions of the North. It is found in Baltistan, Gilgit, Northern Hunza and Chitral. It is relatively common in Baltistan, elsewhere is is rare.
In Pakistan the Caracal is rarely seen, because it is rare and nocturnal. The caracal inhabits the broken hills of Baluchistan and the Deserts of Sind and Punjab. It is found in the Thal desert, the Cholistan desert in Punjab and the Thar desert in Sind. It is found in the lower hill ranges of Baluchistan. The Caracal is also found in Attock and might still be found in Kala Chita hills and the Salt Range.
Local name: Jangli Billi (Urdu)
Jungle cats have adapted well to irrigated cultivation, having been observed in many different types of agricultural and forest plantations in Pakistan. This cat is found through out the riverine tracts of the Indus and the cultivated and irrigated lands of Punjab and Sind. This is the most common wild cat in Pakistan.
Local name: Mach Billi (Sindhi: Sind)
Roberts (1977) reports that in Pakistan fishing cats have been seen to catch waterfowl by swimming up to them while fully submerged and seizing their legs from underneath (all above information from Iucn's Cats Specialist Group).
In Pakistan, it is mainly found along the lower reaches of the Indus River, although a few stragglers penetrate the northeast of the country along the Ravi and and Sutlej rivers (Roberts 1977). It is found around the swamps and reed beds of Haleji and Kalri lakes in Lower Sind. In the Indus river basin in Pakistan, fishing cats are probably on the verge of extinction.
Indian Desert Cat or Wild Cat
(Felis Silvestris Ornata)
Local name: ?
In Pakistan this cat is found in the dry zones of Lower Sind, such as Dadu and Thatta districts. Further west it is found in Lasbela and Merkan areas. This cat is very rare in Pakistan. The main threat to this cat is hybridization with domestic cats.
Pakistan Sand Cat
(Felis Margarita Scheffeli)
Local name: Gorbeh Sheni (Farsi: Iran)
Despite early reports that the sand cat population of Baluchistan’s Chagai desert was devastated by commercial collectors within 10 years after foreign collectors became aware of its existence (Roberts 1977, Hemmer 1977), more recent information indicates that the sand cat still occurs widely in the area (above information from Iucn). But, still the Sand Cat is rare in Pakistan and is only found in the Chagai desert in South west Baluchistan. The Pakistan Sand Cat is considered endangered and will not survive until stronger wildlife laws are put in to place to stop it's export from Pakistan.
Local name: Chita Billi (Urdu)
In Pakistan this cat is found in the Murree hills and the Kaghan valley. It is also found in Azad Kashmir. Further West it is found in Swat, Dir, and lower Gilgit. It might be found in Chitral as well.
Local name: psk kuhey (Dari: Afghanistan)
The small southern populations in Baluchistan, isolated from the main population, occur in montane juniper steppe (Roberts 1977). This cat is also found in Baltistan, but there is no information about its status there. This cat is rare in Pakistan.
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