Who we are

Our focus

The Persian Wildlife Foundation initiates and participates in education and awareness-raising programs in an attempt to bring focus toward the unique biodiversity that exists in Iran despite the traumatic events that have occurred in the country over the last 30 years. Revolution, war and natural disasters have had a devastating effect without enough action to counter the results. Many of Iran’s wildlife species are unique to that country and their loss would mean a loss for all humanity. Over the last century, the country has lost the Persian Lion and the Caspian Tiger, two magnificent cat species. Currently, the Asiatic Cheetah is on the verge of extinction, as is the Onager (Iranian Wild Ass) and the Iranian sub-species of the Asiatic Black Bear. Many other birds and fish are facing a similar fate. Our goal is to ensure the survival of the magnificent flora and fauna of Iran through research, media and education.  


Onager or the Iranian Wild Ass (Equus hemionus onager) 

This unique subspecies of the Wild Ass is currently restricted to the two populations in Touran National Park and Bahramgour Reserve (IUCN RedList) and outside of Iran to 5 introduced animals in Saudi Arabia. (Photo Credit: H. Moghimi)

Asiatic black bear or the Baluchistan bear (Ursus thibetanus gedrosianus) 

It is estimated that less than 200 individuals exist in the southeast of Iran. (Photo Credit: Mohitban Society)

The Persian fallow deer (Dama mesopotamica) 

This species is unique to Mesopotamia and its natural habitat is around the two rivers of Karkheh and Dez in Khuzestan province. This mammal of Iran was thought to be extinct by the 1940s until a very small population of possibly 25 individuals was rediscovered in Khuzestan a decade later. A number of intensive conservation measures since the 1960s have brought the species back from the brink of extinction. (Photo credit: H. Moghimi)

Chukar Partridge (Alectoris chukar) 

Despite being under pressure in many areas, this species has been able to survive due to its amazing ability to inhabitat hard to reach and inaccessible mountainous areas

National and local impact

The Persian Wildlife Foundation is addressing conservation issues that can have a national impact as well as local efforts aimed at species protection and habitat improvement and expansion. PWF maintains an ongoing open dialogue with many internationally recognized conservation groups and is continually expanding its relationships. In pursuing its goals, the Foundation solicits help from the international community and also the Iranian diaspora in the United States.

Black-necked grebes (Podiceps nigricollis) 

Black-neck grebes reside in a number of resident populations in Iran and many more visit the country in the winter. These birds use floating platforms of aquatic vegetation as nets. (Photo credit: B. Moussavi)

As a result of the different climactic and ecological areas, Iran boasts a broad selection of flora and fauna.  The fauna can be broken down by the regions they inhabit; namely forests and woodlands, semi-desert, desert lowlands, steppe, arid mountains and salted alluvial marshes. The fauna consists of 194 species of mammals, 534 species of birds, 216 species of reptiles, 20 species of amphibians and 180 species of fresh water fish for a total of 1144 species.  According to the IUCN 78 of the species are considered threatened, including 17 of the mammals, 20 of the birds, 9 of the reptiles, 4 of the amphibians and 28 of the fish.