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Subscriber-Written Trip Report
On Markhor Hunting in Tajikistan

Below is one sample of such a Report which is made available to you FREE of Charge.

Report ID: 9805 Weapon Used: Rifle How Hunt Was Conducted? Guided
Date of Hunt: February 17, 2014 to February 28, 2014
Place of Hunt: Tajikistan -
Hunt Area: GBAO; Darvaz District

Outfitter (or safari company): M-Sayod. Tel. 011- 992 98 8815757; Email:;
Personal Guide (if any): Davlathan
Booking Agent (if any):
Trip Arrangements
(if self-guided):
License Required:

Major Game Animals Taken: Markhor, Bukharan - Availability: Abundant - Trophy Size: Good
Game Sought But Not Taken:
Game Condition Comments:

SERVICE RATINGS (excellent, good, fair or poor)
Quality of Outfit: Excellent Guide/PH Ability: Excellent
Condition of Camp: Good Condition of Equipment: Good
Quality of Food: Good Trophy Care: Good
Name of Airline: Turkish Air Airline Service: Excellent
Airline Comments:

Hunting Fees: Amount: $0
Trophy Fees: Amount: $0
Permits/Licenses: Amount: $0
Commercial Airfares: Amount: $0
Charter Airfares: Amount: $0
Other Costs: Amount: $0
Total: $0

Problems of Hunt:
Highlights of Hunt:
Equipment Recommendations:
Would You Recommend This Hunt to a Friend? yes

Hunter Name: Ivor Karan
Contact Information: Tel. +27 16 340 8000 - P.O. Box 53 | Heidelberg | Gauteng | South Africa | 1438 E-mail:
Hunting Experience: Vast
Physical Condition: Good

IMPORTANT NOTES (actions taken if hunter unhappy with hunt)
Notified Outfitter? Notified Personal Guide? Notified Booking Agent?
Seeking any kind of restitution or other settlement from agent, outfitter or guide?
If Seeking Restitution, What is Sought?

Towards the end of 2013 I had a telephone call from Gerhard Damm, the President of the Division of Applied Science for the CIC International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation CIC and also lead author of the recently published CIC Caprinae Atlas of the World. Gerhard told me that the Mulloyorov clan in south-eastern Tajikistan had been working diligently for more than a decade to re-establish viable populations of the Bukharan or Tajik markhor (Capra falconeri heptneri). The Mulloyorovs worked closely together and were aptly supported and advised by Stefan Michel, an intrepid and highly dedicated German scientist who lives and works for many years in Tajikistan, and Stefans wife Tatjana Rosen Michel. Stefan is a member of the IUCN Caprinae Specialist Group who also assisted Gerhard in the preparation of the markhor chapters of the CIC Caprinae Atlas of the World. Tatjana works for US non-profit Panthera and is leading the organizations programme on conservation of snow leopards in Tajikistan. The Mulloyorovs, headed by Patriarch Davlatkhon, have been protecting markhor (and urial) populations within a conservancy area in the Darvaz district on the slopes of the Darvaz Mountain Range. Their home base is in the village of Zighar, which is approximately half way between Dushanbe and Khorog, on the banks of the Pyanj River which forms the border between Tajikistan and Afghanistan. The markhor conservation efforts of the Mulloyorovs have been simply spectacular, as Gerhard pointed out, and the Bukharan markhor populations within the Zighar Conservancy had reached a level where sustainable use through trophy hunting presented a viable option to sustainably fund an expansion of the markhor conservation efforts and earn direly needed funds for local community projects. The conservation success of the Mulloyorov was officially recognized, when the Tajik Academy of Science established in 2013 that a trophy hunting quota for Bukharan markhor would be ecologically feasible, and when the respective governmental authorities of Tajikistan consented to, and authorized, a markhor hunting quota for the 2013/2014 season. After Gerhard had explained all this to me, I did not hesitate a moment to immediately commit for two of these coveted permits for my long-term hunting partner Etuan van der Westhuizen and myself. Our planned shikar would be the first legal hunt for Bukharan markhor in Tajikistan in many decades. Some more correspondence between Gerhard, Stefan and I followed and we soon had the trip organized for February 2014. After a flight with Turkish Airlines from Johannesburg via Istanbul and onwards to Dushanbe, Etuan and I were met at the airport of the Tajik capital by Ayub Mulloyorov, who is in charge of MSayod Outfitters, the Mulloyorov outfitting company which already organizes hunts for Central Asian ibex (Capra sibirica alaiana) and Eurasian wild boar (Sus scrofa ssp.)and now of course our markhor shikar. Formalities were dealt with swiftly and competently, including the importation of our firearms. Believe it - within an hour of landing, our small group was on route to the hunting camp in a late model Toyota Landcruiser station wagon! An easy and interesting six hour drive from Dushanbe brought us to the M-Sayod hunting camp located on a Mulloyorov family farm. We were the first hunters to stay in a newly constructed two storey house built for the exclusive use of M-Sayod hunting guests. Private bed rooms with indoor showers and toilets are indeed a very rare luxury for hunters in this part of the world. The next day we were off hunting. My partner Etuan was accompanied by Ayubs brother Dodi, who is in charge of the hunting and guiding at M-Sayod; Ayubs father Davlatkhon as guide and his youngest brother Rholieb as interpreter came with me. Both parties had also the assistance of a various helpers. There is no vehicular access into the mountains other than driving along the main road and accessing the steep mountains via a network of foot trails. The guides know the area very well and due to their intense caring for the markhor on observation and anti-poaching patrols, they know the whereabouts of the home ranges of most of the mature males. We left base camp in the early mornings hours and trekked into the mountains along these well-established trails. A number of vantage points on the way were used for glassing the steep slopes for markhor and simply looking at the breath-taking landscape. It turned out  as expected  to be a physically demanding hunt with very steep mountains to climb and a lot of loose shale to contend with. My hunting partner Etuan harvested a magnificent markhor on the first day after a mammoth trek into the steepest of mountains. I stalked and killed my Bukharan markhor on the fourth day, with a 380 meter shot at an upward angle of 42°. Field care of the two trophies by M-Sayod staff under the supervision of head guide Dodi was exemplary  both markhor were expertly skinned out for life size mounts. With the help of Stefan and Ayub, all local and export permits were taken care of exactly as per our agreement, and Dieter Ochsenbein of Highveld Taxidermy (South Africa) assisted with the mandatory CITES procedures for importing the trophies into our home country South Africa. The trophies arrived in South Africa beginning of August in good condition and without any regulatory problems. Considering the novelty of Bukharan markhor hunting and the stringent regulations for the harvesting of these enigmatic animals as well as the movement of the trophies, all went smoothly and without problems. The two Bukharan markhor should soon be in Etuans and my trophy rooms. I highly recommend M-Sayod Outfitters to anyone who contemplates hunting this most rare of all markhor in Tajikistan. The hospitality shown to our party by our hosts of the Mulloyorov family was great, we were very well fed and taken care of. I can recommend this hunt to anyone with a passion for mountain hunting. Last not least  all you want to know about markhor biology, distribution, conservation and sustainable use is contained in Gerhard Damm and Nicolas Francos massive two-volume CIC Caprinae Atlas of the World. Contact details for M-Sayod Outfitters: M-Sayod Ltd. Zighar Village, Darvaz District, GBAO Tajikistan. Tell no: + 992 98 8815757 E-mail: Stefan Michel: E-mail

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