Kazakhstan sees an annual 40% rise in number of saiga antelopes
The main reason to hunt for saiga antelopes is the constant demand for their horns being the crucial ingredient in eastern medicine.
As of 2018, there is the habitat of 215 100 saiga antelopes in Kazakhstan, with an annual 41% rise. The Kazakh Ministry of Agriculture has shared on its Facebook page.
They in the Ministry has also shared the reasons of mass mortality of saiga antelopes in 2015.
"In the period from May 11 to June 5, 2015, there was the mass mortality of Betpak Dala saiga antelopes in the Kostanay, Aktobe and Akmola regions, with approximate disposal of 150 thousand dead saiga antelopes. Specialized labs and scientific organizations sampled pathological materials of the dead animals, the soil, water, vegetation of the area of mass mortality of saiga antelopes for laboratory and scientific studies. According to a consolidated statement of the Scientific Research Institute for Biological Safety Problems, pasteurellosis was the main reason to lead to mortality and morbidity in the Akmola, Aktobe and Kostanay regions," they said in the Agriculture Ministry.
The Foresty and Wildlife Committee carries out the actions to expand a network of the most protected natural areas to increase the protection efficiency of saiga antelopes.
"Despite to the actions taken to curb the poaching of saiga antelopes, the problem still remains. The main reason to hunt for saiga antelopes is the constant demand for their horns being the crucial ingredient in eastern medicine. The way of poaching, collecting and buying the horns is a demonstration to smuggle saiga products abroad," they noted in the Ministry.