The return of Mongolia's wild horses | WWF

The return of Mongolia's wild horses

Posted on 17 September 2004    
A re-introduced Mongolian wild horse or takhi (Equus ferus przewalski).
© WWF / Anton Vorauer
Khomiin Tal, Mongolia - Long absent from the Mongolian steppe, WWF welcomes the arrival of the endangered takhi horse back to its native land. 
 
In an official ceremony organized by WWF-Mongolia, government officials, local authorities, and tribesmen marked their homecoming in a traditional Mongolian tradition of dropping milk on the heads of the horses as a sign of good luck. 
 
The 12 horses, five male and seven female, bred in a French nature reserve by the Association for Takhi Conservation — arrived on 5 September to their new home in the Khomiin Tal steppe. 
 
Khomiin Tal, occupying 2,500km2 in western Mongolia, acts as a buffer zone to the Khar Us Nuur National Park and is part of the Altay-Sayan Ecoregion, which consists of high mountain taiga, tundra, forest, wetland, steppe, and desert. 

The Altay-Sayan Ecoregion is one of WWF's Global 200 ecoregions — a science-based global ranking of the world's most biologically outstanding habitats and the regions on which WWF concentrates its efforts.

According to WWF-Mongolia Director Chimeg Junain, a feasibility study conducted in 1998 identified Khomiin Tal as appropriate area for the reintroduction of the takhi horse (Equus ferus przewalski), also known as the Przewalskii. 
 
With a small build, upright mane, an ass-like tail, and dark brown legs, the takhi is considered the world’s only genuine wild horse. 
 
Two other takhi horse populations are found in Mongolia — one in the Khustai mountains in the central part of the country and one in Takhiin Tal in the southern Altai region. 

For further information:
 
Chimeg Junain, Director
WWF Mongolia Programme Office
Tel: +976 11 311 659
E-mail: chimeg@magicnet.mn
A re-introduced Mongolian wild horse or takhi (Equus ferus przewalski).
© WWF / Anton Vorauer Enlarge

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