Mustang exports nearly 6,000 mountain goats for Dashain

Bijay Nepal 19 Oct 2023
Mustang exports nearly 6,000 mountain goats for Dashain Photo: Himal Press

POKHARA: Nearly 6,000 mountain goats have been brought to Pokhara from Mustang for Dashain celebration.

Rishi Ram Pokharel, officiating chief of the Veterinary Hospital and Livestock Service Expert Center, said that 5,750 animals, including around 200 sheep, have been exported from Mustang.

Traders from Myagdi, Kaski, Parbat, Baglung, and Kathmandu had reached the farms in Mustang last week to purchase mountain goats and sheep.

“We allow traders to take animals from Mustang only after their health check-up,” Pokharel added.

Generally, mountain goats aged between 3-4 years are exported from Mustang for meat consumption. Since mountain goats graze freely on different medicinal herbs in alpine grasslands, their meat is considered a prized asset during Dashain festival.

The mountain goat population in Mustang is estimated to be around 50,000. Farmers in Baragung Muktichhetra, Gharapjhong, Loghekar Damodarkunda, and Lo Manthang Rural Municipality each have 30-40 mountain goats on their farms, according to Pokharel.

Due to rising demand, the price of mountain goats, however, has been increasing every passing year. Local farmers say the price has gone up as traders haven’t been able to import mountain goats from Tibet or China since the COVID pandemic.

Mountain goats, which would be available for Rs 25,000 per head few years ago, now cost as high as Rs 57,000 in Pokhara.

Traders have started selling mountain goats at Jaubari along Pokhara-Baglung Highway in Pokhara-1. Pokhara Ranabhat, of Amar Singh Chowk, said mountain goats were becoming unaffordable. “Until a few years ago, we could buy mountain goats for Rs 25,000-30,000. This year, the price has gone up to as high as Rs 60,000,” he added.

Traders in Pokhara source mountain goats from Mustang as well as Bajhang and Bajura in the Sudurpashchim Province.

Rajendra Bahadur Dhami, a trader from Bajhang, said he started selling mountain goats a few days ago. “I had brought 130 mountain goats. Of them, I have managed to sell 30 so far,” he added.

Published On: 19 Oct 2023


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