25th anniversary of the reintroduction of Przewalski’s horse
2017 witnessed the 25th anniversary of the Przewalski’s horse (Mongolian name: Takhi) reintroduction in Mongolia. The Przewalski’s horse is the last remaining truly wild horse species in the world. Extinct in the wild in 1960’s, it survived thanks to a successful reintroduction program that began a quarter of a century ago.
The first 16 Przewalski’s horses arrived in Hustai National Park, Mongolia on 5 June, 1992, World Environmental Day transported bythe Dutch NGO FRPH and the Mongolian NGO MACNE’s. Since then, many Przewalski’s horses have come from European countries to Mongolia. Today, more than 500 Przewalski’s horses are free ranging in Mongolia, which is the highest number of free ranging Przewalski’s horses in the world. In consequence, the world population status according to The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ changed from Extinct in the Wild to Critically Endangered in 2008, and to Endangered in 2011.
The initial Draft Przewalski Horse Global Conservation Plan called for the Przewalski’s horse to be re-established in free ranging populations in wild habitats in sufficient numbers (250 adults) to allow evolution and adaptation. To avoid extinction by predation or random events, the plan recommended herds of five to ten adult animals. The reintroduced Mongolian Przewalski’s horse population has now met this recommendation.
There is now, three Przewalski’s horse reintroduction sites in Mongolia, Hustai National Park, Great Gobi “B” Strictly Protected Area and Khomyn tal area. These 3 sites, together with the Mongolian Ministry of Environment and Tourism, celebrated the 25th Anniversary of the reintroduction of the Przewalski’s horseby organising various events including a scientific workshop, a press conference, a photo exhibition and a reception to honor the people involved in this great program.
The Mongolian NGO “Hustai National Park” Trust, an IUCN member since 2007, is continuing its reintroduction program in HNP, while the International Takhi Group and the NGO Khomyn Talyn Takhi continue the reintroduction program in their respective areas. For more information visit the Hustai National Park website www.hustai.mn or write to Takhi