Islamabad: Snow Leopard Foundation Pakistan (SLF) has always given importance to awareness and education component for youth particularly students in its program activities. On July 19th 2017, SLF conducted ecological and social activities for students in Naltar valley. The activities were conducted in collaboration with Hamoodur Rahman Foundation (HRF) / Dignosco. The group comprised of students from different schools around the country.

The activities in Naltar valley were planned at two locations. First location was Snow Leopard Rebilitation Center (SLRC) at Bishgiri. Students were given information regarding the center, its need and utility. The students were excited to see the snow leopard at the center. SLF professional team briefed the students on the ecology of snow leopard and associated fauna and flora of the region. In question and answer session, the students asked questions about SLF initiatives for the conservation of snow leopard and its prey species. The students were also briefed about SLF livestock vaccination campaign for local community to help them offsetting losses from snow leopard predation. The students took part in the social activity and installed dustbins around the center to keep the area clean and control the degradation of fragile ecosystem.

From SLRC the students went to Naltar lake which was the second location of the study tour. At Naltar lake students participated in social activities including installation of dustbins. The students were briefed about the coordinate system, map reading and use of GPS for navigation purposes. They showed keen interest in learning the ecological survey techniques and after the briefing, students successfully performed map reading and use of GPS in the field. SLF team also provided the technical information and data collection methods used for ecological surveys in snow leopard conservation.

At the end of the study tour of Naltar Valley, the students and HRF/Dignosco team thanked SLF team and Game Inspector GB Parks & Wildlife Department for conducting the ecological and social activities which provided valuable knowledge and awareness about snow leopard and environmental conservation.

Courtesy: Pamir Times