In December of 2017, Frank hunted mid-Asian ibex in Tajikistan. This area is one of five that are set aside as snow leopard conservancies. The ibex populations are strong which allows limited hunting and the money goes directly to the village communities. The people from the snow leopard conservancy realize that the leopards need a healthy population of ibex to survive. By giving people from these villages employment or income from the ibex hunts and from working for the conservancy, it has virtually eliminated poaching. It was explained that the village consists of about 350 individuals. A large number of them benefit from the conservancies revenue that an individual who was poaching would dishonor their family. This created a working conservation model and poaching is almost non existent.
Khalil Karumov of the Republic of Tajikistan, winner of the 2018 Peter Hathaway Capstick Hunting Heritage
The Capstick Award is presented to individuals or organizations whose achievements reveal a sustained and significant contribution to the conservation of wildlife and its habitat.
Karimov is a professional hunter, guide, conservationist and wildlife visionary, and he’s responsible for changing the face of hunting in Tajikistan. Karimov established the Hunting and Conservation Alliance of Tajikistan (HCAT), a non-governmental organization whose profits from sustainable hunting are reinvested into nature conservation and community development in and around the conservancies.
Since 2008 game management areas that are protected by families or associations of local hunters have been established with the support of wildlife conservation and development organizations. Revenues generated from guided hiking, game-viewing, wildlife photography and hunting are to support the work of local rangers and nature guides, and any surpluses are invested into local development projects. This approach provides revenues to local families and motivates them to refrain from unsustainable poaching and to protect durably the wildlife populations and the ecosystems they rely on.
Khalil and his team run a working conservation model of community-based organizations set up with the goal of conserving the endangered wildlife of Tajikistan including Snow Leopards.