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Authorities in Kazakhstan says around one-third of the endangered saiga antelope population in this Central Asian nation has mysteriously died off in the last few days. Kazakhstan’s agriculture ministry said Friday the number of saiga that have died may have reached 85,000. The ministry says it suspects the animals, which are recognizable for their distinctive humped snout, may have been struck by an epidemic of pasteurellosis caused by a bacterial infection. Officials say international veterinarian experts have been flown to Kazakhstan to study other possible causes for the catastrophic die-off. The number of saiga plummeted in the 1990s as a result of poaching. At the latest Kazakh government count in 2014, the saiga population stood at 257,000. Saiga are also found in smaller numbers in parts of Russia.
originally posted by: Elementalist
Antelope is not some small animal, and are herbivore! Less chance of disease.. especially on this scale.
As is, I can't come to terms with bacterial epidemic. That's nuts..
All these animal die offs out of the blue, in recent years? But antelope is an eye opener.
I'm Kazakhstan, people were just falling into deep slumbers last year or earlier, was that ever figured out?
What is happening in Kazakhstan?
Kazakhstan's new Central Reference Laboratory will partly replace the aging buildings nearby where the USSR kept some of its finest potential bioweapons--and where scientists study those powerful pathogens today. When it opens in September 2015, the $102-million project laboratory is meant to serve as a Central Asian way station for a global war on dangerous disease. And as a project under that Pentagon program, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, the lab will be built, and some of its early operation funded, by American taxpayers.
"We're looking forward to this becoming a regional training facility focused both on human and animal infections,"
originally posted by: mysterioustranger
a reply to: Eagleyedobserver
85000 is 1/3? So x 3 is about 390,000 of them as an "endangered" species in that location?
At the latest Kazakh government count in 2014, the saiga population stood at 257,000.
The saiga (Saiga tatarica) is a critically endangered antelope
Life Science Journal 2014;11(6)
saiga mass death in Kazakhstanwas registered in 1981, 1984, 1988, 2010 and 2011. Inthe territory of former Turgai oblast in May 1981about 100 000 of the species died and in May 1988 –about 270 000 animals died (Aikimbayev, 1985). InMay 1984 more than 100 000 saigas died(Martinevskiy, 2001). In May 2010 more than 12thousand animals died
Disaster by Design: The Aral Sea and Its Lessons for Sustainability
In May 1988, over the course of only about an hour, approximately 500,000 saiga antelope suddenly dropped dead in the Turgay steppes northeast of the Aral Sea