Our Work

Livestock Insurance

Our Insurance Scheme is the oldest and longest running livestock insurance scheme against Snow Leopard predation in the world which was started in one village in Baltistan region of Northern Pakistan in the year 1999. The scheme is based on a simple premise that snow leopard predation is a stochastic shock to farmers and they will be better off by spreading this risk amongst themselves. Thus it operates on a basic logic upon which most insurance schemes are based. Under the insurance schemes villagers pay a premium amount per head of livestock. Both small animals such as goats and sheep and large animals such as dzo and cows as determined by the historical loss rate of domestic livestock to snow leopard predation are included, while the project subsidizes the premium up to 50%.

Predator Proof Corrals

Snow leopard attacks occur both on open range and inside villages and pasture settlements. Compared to the open range predation damage is maximum when a snow leopard manages to find its way into a corral often decimating the entire herd if successful. Known as “surplus killings” snow leopards are known to have killed up to fifty goats and sheep in a single incident. In order to reduce these incidences and the drain on insurance funds BWCDO finances the building of communal predator-proof corrals in project areas. These corrals are built on cost-sharing basis where communities provide local material – stones, wood and unskilled labor while BWCDO provides extra-local material like cement, iron posts, mesh wire, wood and skilled labor. Thus far BWCDO has built 52 predator-proof corrals throughout the region. These corrals are well maintained and thus far no incidence of corral invasion has been reported.

Predator Proof Corrals

Snow leopard attacks occur both on open range and inside villages and pasture settlements. Compared to the open range predation damage is maximum when a snow leopard manages to find its way into a corral often decimating the entire herd if successful. Known as “surplus killings” snow leopards are known to have killed up to fifty goats and sheep in a single incident. In order to reduce these incidences and the drain on insurance funds BWCDO finances the building of communal predator-proof corrals in project areas. These corrals are built on cost-sharing basis where communities provide local material – stones, wood and unskilled labor while BWCDO provides extra-local material like cement, iron posts, mesh wire, wood and skilled labor. Thus far BWCDO has built 52 predator-proof corrals throughout the region. These corrals are well maintained and thus far no incidence of corral invasion has been reported.

Conservation Awareness

We have also been working on conservation awareness and education in collaboration with the Snow Leopard Conservancy since the last decade. Literature such as posters and brochures has been produced while a booklet highlighting the importance of snow leopard conservation has also been made for local schools. Organized annual debates, drawing and essay competitions have also been held annually. These conservation awareness activities help us build tolerance, especially among the young generation towards wildlife so that they can contribute to its long term survival.