The population of rare antelopes has doubled since 2019

The population of a rare species of antelope has more than doubled since 2019 - the researchers note that this is

a very rare occurrence. According to the first aerial survey in two years, the number of saigas in Kazakhstan, their largest place of population, has grown from 334 to 842 thousand.

In 2019, researchers feared the animal was on the brink of extinction following a mass extinction in 2015. Then pictures of carcasses scattered across the steppes hit the headlines of world newspapers.

After several environmental protection measures at once,including government measures to curb poaching, as well as local and international conservation efforts, the species has begun to recover. This, along with the natural stability of the species, gives hope for its full-fledged future, notes Albert Salemgareyev from the Association for the Conservation of Biodiversity of Kazakhstan (ACBK).

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However, already now the fate of saigas is harsh.has changed. But even with the current boom, their numbers are unlikely to recover to the millions that researchers recorded during the Soviet era. This is partly due to new threats - government infrastructure projects, oil and gas development.

The latest survey from Aprilshows not only a significant increase in the total number, but also a sharp recovery of one particular population in Ustyurt in the south of the country. In 2015, 1 thousand animals remained in this area, but during the new census, scientists found out that their number had increased to 12 thousand.

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