Mongolian wildlife face extinction crisis

Dec 06, 2005

Wildlife Conservation Society scientists say they are deeply concerned about an alarming decrease in general wildlife populations in Mongolia.

The New York-based organization blames overhunting and excessive trade in skins and other animal products for the problem, the New York Times reported Tuesday.

A WCS study of Mongolia's wildlife says by some estimates, the populations of endangered species -- marmots, argali sheep, antelope, red deer, bears, Asiatic wild asses -- have plummeted by 50 percent to 90 percent.

Two exceptions are an apparent increase in the number of wolves and a gradual increase in the number of endangered Przewalski wild horses.

"The country is facing a quite extraordinary and unnoticed extinction crisis, or at least the threat of one," Peter Zahler, assistant director for Asia at the New York-headquartered Wildlife Conservation Society, told the newspaper.

The WCS said the nation's independence from the Soviet Union in 1990 "was the undoing of Mongolia's century-long effort to control wildlife trade."

The WCS says nearly all of Mongolia's annual $100 million in wildlife trade is illegal.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: New study of freelance workers examines link between their well-being and hours worked

Related Stories

First snow leopards collared in Afghanistan

Jul 17, 2012

Two snow leopards were captured, fitted with satellite collars, and released for the first time in Afghanistan by a team of Wildlife Conservation Society conservationists and Afghan veterinarians conducting ...

Asia's Odd-ball Antelope Get Collared

Oct 20, 2006

A group of scientists led by the New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) working in Mongolia’s windswept Gobi Desert recently fitted high-tech GPS (Global Positioning System) collars on eight saiga ...

Recommended for you

Using Twitter to probe political polarization

50 minutes ago

We'd like to believe that our opinions are nuanced, balanced, high-minded, wise and above all, unique, but alas they are not—or so says Twitter. Most often, those we engage with on the popular social media ...

New research says Anne Frank likely died a month earlier

3 hours ago

Teenage Jewish diarist Anne Frank likely died of typhus in a Nazi concentration camp about a month earlier than previously thought, the Amsterdam museum that honors her memory said Tuesday on the 70th anniversary of the officially ...

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.