Mongolian Saiga Day Celebration by Eco-Club Members
Although the air temperatures are rising and getting warmer on these days, the wildlife including the saiga is still experiencing a limited access to natural hays and open water following the unkind winter conditions. Therefore, eco-club members-school children planned in advance and performed some conservation activities especially devoted for the saiga. One of their performances was a week-campaign for saiga conservation announced for 11 eco-clubs with over 400 school children members in the soums within the saiga distribution areas. Under this campaign, the eco-club members identified and had some basic measurements in 10 natural rivers and springs, where saiga usually access to water. They had the measurements (e.g. locations, water availability, & covering areas) to compare them with those in the next years.
According to the eco-club members, surrounding areas around most of the natural springs they found were abundant by livestock and wildlife wastes and carrions. So, they removed the wastes and maintained water discharges by stones to prevent from entering any solid pollutants such as solid wastes. Supported the eco-club members’ initiatives, the WWF-Mongolia called for water source protection project proposals for small grants and selected the best project proposals on the Mongolian Saiga Day, April 28, 2018. The Mongolian Saiga Day event was attended by a total of 66 members represented the 11 eco-clubs. The event participants presented and shared what they have done under the week campaign and their project proposals for protection of the open water bodies including natural springs accessed by the wildlife.
A total of ten project proposals were received by the host organization. Amongst, the project proposals from the eco-clubs in Sharga, Tugrug, and Zereg soums (county) were the best and awarded with the grants.
In addition to, the Day was an experience sharing opportunity for the eco-clubs in Western and Eastern Mongolia as representatives from eco-clubs in Dadal, Bayan-Adraga, and Norovlin soums of Khentii Aimag (province) in Eastern Mongolia visited Western Mongolia. This has been the first ever chance to visit Western Mongolia. The eco-club members-school children from the eastern region were presented conservation activities by the eco-club members in the western region. The eco-club members exchanged the details on the Mongolan saiga and Mongolian gazelle (a key species in Eastern Mongolia) and their conservation among others. In turn, representatives from the eco-club members in Western Mongolia were invited to Eastern Mongolia in this summer.