Markhor A type of wild goat mostly found in the areas of the Gilgit-Baltistan, Chitral district, and Kalash valley of the northern areas of Pakistan. In addition, Markhor’s are also present in some areas of India, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan. Markhor is the National Animal of Pakistan and also a sign of the Secret Inter-Services Intelligence(ISI) agency. 

In Balti, it is called “Redakh” and, in the Persian language “Mar” means snake and “Khor” means “snake-eating animal”. According to the local people, after killing a snake, it chews. As a result of chewing, gum comes out of the mouth and that gum is used in the treatment of snakebite.


Markhkor’s physical appearance

Markhor’s height from the ground is 65 to 115 cm, length is 132 to 186 cm and weight is 32 to 110 kg. The color is brown and tangoes white on the lower part. Longer hair on the chest, neck and lower legs of the male Markhor compared to the female. The body is reddish in color, and the hair on the neck is small. The male and female have bills, which grow near the top of the head, the horns can be up to 160 cm and the female can reach up to 25 cm. Its body odor is very strong compared to common household odors. Markhor is a nomadic animal and can go to an altitude of 600 to 3600 meters.

In general, it eats the leaves of trees in winter. An animal that mostly eats grasses in the morning or early morning in spring and summer. A female’s pregnancy lasts from 135 to 170 days, resulting in one to two (two to three) lambs. It is usually in the form of a herd that is up to 9 in number. Males prefer to be alone. Their voices resemble goats. In the winters, males and females are found together in the grasslands. In Summer they prefer to live in forests.


So far, Markhor has been recognized in three categories globally. Kashmiri Markhor and Punjabi Markhu are a little bit different and their horns are very flat. In Punjab, they were found in the forest of Norstan. There is also evidence of this in Jhelum. Kashmiri Markhor is Found in Chitral, Gilgit-Baltistan, Kohistan, and other areas. Till1978 Kabul Markhoor in Kabul province Afghanistan in Koh Safi and between them because of they are extremely inaccessible. As their population increased, they go to places in Baluchistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, and Punjab before Dera Ghazi Khan. According to the Department of Forests, their population is in Sheikh Badin and In the Safid Koh part (Kuram and Khyber Agency) there is at least 100 Markhor available. If appropriate measures are not taken for them, the species is almost always rare in the future.


In 1993, the NWFP WD involved local communities in the conservation of wildlife by notifying Community Game Reserve Rules under the Wildlife Act of 1975. In 1997, with the 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 the involvement of local communities in the 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. The community-based markhor conservation program in NWFP succeeds due to the economic incentive.