MONITORING OF THE WILD MAMMAL FAUNA IN BAMO MOUNTAIN IN NORTHERN IRAQ (KURDISTAN) FOR THE FIRST TIME USING CAMERA TRAP METHOD AND RAISING AWARENESS FOR ITS CONSERVATION
Mammals are under threat worldwide due to deforestation, hunting, and other human activities. In Iraq, a total of 93 species of wild mammals have been recorded including species with global conservation concern. Bamo Mountain is situated within the Zagros Mountains in northern Iraq which is a suitable habitat for wild mammals. Due to scarcity of the field survey efforts and cryptic behavior, monitoring of the wild mammals fauna in Zagros Mountain seems challenging. Therefore, we used a camera trap which seems to be an ideal way to determine species diversity of wild mammals in Bamo Mountain. Moreover, interviews with local villagers were performed. The mammalian diversity of Bamo Mountain is not fully explored but seemed threatened by local extinction due to poaching and wildlife trafficking, minefields, and annual fires.
In this study, a total of eight species of wild mammals were recorded for the first time in Bamo Mountain using camera trap method including the Persian leopard Panthera pardus saxicolor Pocock, 1927, and the Wild goat Capra aegagrus Erxleben, 1777, flagship and key species of conservation concern. As far as it is concerned, the major threats on the wild mammals were discussed and some important points were highlighted towards the establishment of the protected area in Bamo Mountain.
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Received Date: 21 July 2020
Accepted Date: 19 September 2020