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Wild Life Of Balochistan


In the HAZARGANJI CHILTAN NATIONAL PARK, 20 kms southwest of Quetta. Markhors have been given protection. The park is spread over 32500 acres, altitude ranging from 2021 to 3264 meters. Hazarganji literally means “Of A Thousand treasures”. In the folds of these mountains, legend has it, there are over a thousand treasures buried, reminders of the passage of great armies down the corridors of history. The Bactrains, Scythians, Mongols and then the great migrating hordes of Baloch all passed this way.


Markhor, of which there are five distinct kinds, is the national animal of Pakistan. The kind that is most photographed is the chiltan Markhor which, because of its long Horns looks very conspicuous. Evers since the Markhor has been given protection its number has multiplied. Other animals in the park are straight horned Markhors,” GAD”(wild sheep) and leopards which occasional migrate to the park from other areas, wolves, striped hyena, hares, wild cats, and porcupines.


Many birds like Partridge, warblers, Shikras, blue rock pigeon, rock nuthatch, red-gilled choughs, golden eagle, sparrow, hawks, falcons and bearded vultures are either found here or visit the park in different seasons.


Reptiles like monitor and other wild lizards, geckos, afghan tortoise, python, cobra, horned viper and Levantine may also be seen in the park.


Amongst the flora of the park are the 225 species of plants. Prominent are the pistachios, juniper, wild olive, wild ash and wild almond. Many shrubs like wild fig, barberry, wild cherry, makhi, etc., provide Food and shelter to the foraging animals, birds and other life forms. Medicinal herbs like epherda intermadia, geradiana and nabro (densis) and Artemista (scoparia and martima) are also found in the park. There is a splash of color in spring when most of the plants are in bloom. Nature lovers, students, scientists and researchers are welcomed to visit the park at any time of the year. Permit to visit the park can be obtained from the Divisional Forest Officer, Spinny Road, Quetta.

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