Hundreds of rare antelopes die in Kazakhstan

May 30, 2011
This undated file picture shows Saiga antelopes as they drink from a lake outside Almaty. More than 440 endangered Saiga antelopes were found dead in western Kazakhstan last week, suspected victims of the same epidemic that killed 12,000 animals last year, officials say.

More than 440 endangered Saiga antelopes were found dead in western Kazakhstan last week, suspected victims of the same epidemic that killed 12,000 animals last year, officials said on Monday.

The horned animals, distinguished for the flexible snout-like noses, originally inhabited a vast territory stretching from Mongolia to Europe.

But they are now listed as a critically endangered species by the , with an estimated population of 50,000.

The 441 animals found dead last week included 364 does and 77 fawns.

"The fallen animals exhibited poisoning symptoms," the Interfax news agency quoted an emergencies ministry official as saying.

The animals appear to have died from an infectious disease called pasteurellosis, the unnamed official said.

The often-deadly infection strikes the lungs and , and needs to be treated with antibiotics.

Kazakh authorities were currently taking land and other samples to help them determine what had caused the latest outbreak, Interfax said.

Explore further: Diabetes drug found in freshwater is a potential cause of intersex fish

Related Stories

Mystery disease kills rare Kazakh antelopes

May 20, 2010

More than 200 female saiga antelopes have died in Kazakhstan from an unknown disease, further threatening a species already at risk of extinction from poaching and habitat loss, officials said Thursday.

Japan reports bird flu outbreak on quail farm

Feb 27, 2009

An outbreak of bird flu has been reported on a quail farm in central Japan but no animals have died and no humans have been infected, the agriculture ministry said Friday.

Recommended for you

Algae invade amphibian egg masses

Apr 24, 2015

The establishment of symbiotic systems requires one organism to live in or on a host. For some North American amphibians, these symbionts are algae and they associate with their aquatic egg masses. Researchers have begun ...

Biodiversity promotes multitasking in ecosystems

Apr 24, 2015

A new study of the complex interplay between organisms and their environment shows that biodiversity—the variety of organisms living on Earth—is even more important to the healthy functioning of ecosystems ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.