Bird-watching along The Karakoram Highway


The length of the Karakoram highway is 800 km from Havelian (100 km north of Islamabad) and winds through Abbottabad-Mansehra-Thakot-Besham-Pattan-Chilas-Gilgit-Hunza to Khunjerab Pass beyond which Chinese territory begins. Abbottabad is 1255 meters high open valley with green surrounding mountains, cultivated fields, orchards and streams. The fauna in this area is oriental and the bird species are replaced by palae-arctic species as we proceed further along the KKH beyond Thakot.

Birds likely to be seen
Buzzard, Golden Eagle, Steppe Eagle, Lammergeier, Kestrol, Snow Partridge, Seesee Partridge, Himalayan Snow-cock, Chukor Partridge, Monal Pheasant, Snow Pigeon, Hill Pigeon, Rufous Turtle Dove, the Cuckoo, Great Horned Owl, the Swift, European Bee-eater, European Roller, Scalybeltied Green, Woodpecker, short-toed Lark, Horned Lark, Grey Martin, Swallow, Golden Oriole, Brahminy Myna, Magpie, Nutcracker, Alpine chough, Redbilled chough, Rook, Rufous tailed Flycatcher, Booted Warbler, Orphan Warbler, Chiffchaff and other Phylloscopus species, several other warblers, Blue throat and Ruby-throat, Chats, Thrushes, Wren, Dipper, Accentors, Tits, Tree creeper, wall creeper, pipits, Redpols, Wagtails, Finches and Buntings.

Mammals likely to be seen
Markhor, Shapu, Ibex, Marcopolo sheep, Marmot, Pikas, Brown Bear.