Saiga antelopes have died from eating too much

The cause of mass death of saiga in western Kazakhstan in 2010-2011 was eating animals, said Friday at a press conference in Astana, a professor from the Royal Veterinary College in London, Richard Koch.

Last two years in the 20 days of May Zhanibekskom district of West Kazakhstan region in birth areas Ural saiga population documenting mass death saiga. So, in 2010, killed more than 12,000 individuals in the current year — about 500 individuals, with 90% of the dead animals were females and cubs. According to the preliminary data of the Ministry of Agriculture, the cause of mass deaths saiga became infectious disease pasteurellosis.

"We looked at the causes of death in 2010-2011 Saiga in western Kazakhstan. Cases have occurred in these years for one reason — the case was related to pasture" — said Kok.

The expert explained that the 2010-2011 season has been atypical, hot and wet, and the grass grew abundantly in the area.

"We believe that the animals were very hungry and thirsty. They went to pasture, where a lot of moisture. This eating grass, saturated with moisture, leading to disruption of the gastrointestinal tract, and that the violation led to excessive gas production, which has affected the lungs, and animals quickly died of asphyxia "- says Kok

He stressed that there was no evidence that the grass was something tainted

However, a recognized expert, "there were secondary causes … to this (disease of the gastrointestinal tract) joined pasteurellosis."

Saiga — cloven-hoofed mammal of the subfamily of these antelopes. In 2002, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) this species was classified as being in a critical condition. Now antelopes are found only in Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, with calls to Turkmenistan, Russia (Kalmykia and the Astrakhan region) and western Mongolia.

The total number of saiga in Kazakhstan in 2010 amounted to 85,500 heads, including the death in the West Kazakhstan region, about 12,000 animals. Every year on the measures to ensure the protection of the saiga antelope in Kazakhstan, spent 125 million tenge (about 800,000 dollars).

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