Himalayan Brown Bear or the Himalayan Red Bear inhabits the northern alps of Pakistan. Its main habitat in Pakistan is Deosai Plains, the second-highest plateau of the world, located at an elevation of around 4,000 meters (13,000ft) encompassing 3,000 KM2 of uninhabited, rolling grassland, surrounded by snow-clad mountains. The plateau provides a wilderness experience which is tough to beat. Deosai is famously known as “The Roof of the World” and “The Land of Giants”.
Deosai National Park was established in 1993 to protect the Brown Bear extinction. Over 10,000 at one time in Northern Pakistan and Kashmir, today the species is one of the most endangered in South Asia. In almost 30 years only 17 Bears have been sighted in Deosai (Himalayan Wildlife Foundation).
The inimitable Deosai Plateau walled by the Himalayan and Karakorum mountain ranges provides the ultimate sanctuary to the beautiful Brown Bears. Covered in snow for up to eight months of the year, the rolling grassland comes to life for four months in Summer. The Himalayan ecoregion contains over 340 species of plants and 200 types of birds with 17 other types of mammals.
Bears in Deosai are smaller than some of their genetic cousins. Males are larger than females with an average length of 1.9 meters and 135 kg of weight. Females have an average length of 1.6 meters and 70 kg of weight.
Himalayan Brown Bears are mainly vegetarian, they come out of their Winter hibernation in Summer to feed on the rich grasses. Insects and fish are on the menu and so are Marmots, but harder to catch!
Deosai Brown Bears have the lowest reproductive rates among the Brown Bear population anywhere in the world. The Bear Cub sticks with the mother for 5 years and during this period the mother Bear does not mate.
By the devoted hard work of the Himalayan Wildlife Foundation and Conservative Organizations, the population of Brown Bear has grown significantly. “Once only 17, now 43 charming Brown Bears are breathing happily on the Deosai plateau”.
Blog by: Maysum Abbas