Other Carnivores

By the outbreak of the Afghan-Soviet war, 137 species of mammals were known to exist in Afghanistan. Among that group, carnivores are of particular concern as many of Afghanistan’s carnivores are classified as threatened by the IUCN Red List. Many people do not know that the Asiatic Lion, Asiatic cheetah, and tiger used to be found in Afghanistan. They have been extirpated during the past 100 years. WCS is working to prevent a similar outcome for Afghanistan’s other diverse carnivores.

 

Since 2006, WCS has verified the presence of 21 species of non-domestic carnivores in Afghanistan (Table 1), including three newly reported species, the Altai weasel in 2007 in Badakhshan province, the common palm civet in 2008 in Nuristan province and the Central-Asian badger in 2017 in Bamyan province. As of 2017, the presence of the remaining 12 species thought to exist here have yet to be confirmed. The lack of verified records results to some extent from the difficulties in surveying large parts of the country that are inaccessible due to insecurity. 

 

Table 1. List of carnivores of Afghanistan

Common name

Scientific name

Confirmed presence since 2006

Javan mongoose

Herpestes javanicus

No

Indian grey mongoose

Herpestes edwardsi

No

Masked palm civet

Paguma larvata

No

Common palm civet

Paradoxurus hermaphrodites

Yes

Small Indian civet

Viverricula indica

No

Common otter

Lutra lutra

Yes

Yellow-throated marten

Martes flavigula

Yes

Stone marten

Martes foina

Yes

Ermine

Mustela ermine

Yes

Least weasel

Mustela nivalis

No

Altai weasel

Mustela altaica

Yes

Marbled polecat

Vormela peregusna

Yes

Ratel

Mellivora capensis

No

Central-Asian Badger

Meles canescens

Yes

Brown bear

Ursus arctos

Yes

Asiatic black bear

Ursus thibetanus

Yes

Jackal

Canis aureus

Yes

Wolf

Canis lupus

Yes

Red fox

Vulpes vulpes

Yes

Blanford’s fox

Vulpes cana

No

Corsac fox

Vulpes corsac

No

Rueppell’s sand fox

Vulpes rueppellii

No

Common leopard

Panthera pardus

Yes

Snow leopard

Panthera uncia

Yes

Asiatic cheetah

Acinonyx jubatus venaticus

No

Lynx

Lynx lynx

Yes

Caracal

Caracal caracal

No

Wild cat

Felis silvestris

Yes

Sand cat

Felis margarita

No

Jungle cat

Felis chaus

Yes

Pallas’ cat

Otocolobus manul

Yes

Leopard cat

Prionailurus bengalensis

Yes

Striped hyena

Hyaena hyaena

Yes

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