Issues in Mongolia

Deforestation
Deforestation

Deforestation

inventory of 2007, about 19 million hectares or 12.1 percent of national territory is forested,

Illegal logging continued to be rampant, with very little capacity for law enforcement within local governments.

Between 1990 and 2007, 6.47 million hectares was damaged by fire, mostly caused by people. In 2006 alone, 391.8 thousand hectares of forest in the vicinity of Ulaanbaatar was destroyed or damaged

Mongolian Forest Ranger
Mongolian Forest Ranger

Additionally the people who are in charge of protecting the forest; the Forest Rangers, are severely neglected by the government.

-          The Rangers lives are endangered by the illegal loggers who are desperate for this source of income. 

-          The Rangers have to spend long periods away from their families in difficult living conditions

-          And they are compensated with the lowest wages for government jobs at 200,000 per month(~$150 USD)

Desertification
Desertification

Pasture Degradation and Desertification

Mongolia is a country that highly relies on livestock:

-          An increased demand for Cashmere has resulted in an increase in goat composition.

Goats have a higher impact on the environment then other livestock because they eat a wider variety of plants, including eating young trees

-          Sheep cut the grass down so low that it can often not grow back.

-          Climate change as resulted in accelerated desertification

-          As habitat is lost, wildlife and livestock compete for resources and foreign invasive species are introduced into new habitats.

 

  • ·         The Dzud (great winter storms) kill off large numbers of livestock so herders try to mazamize herd size to compensate
  • ·         Livestock impact on wetlands is more severe: they trample nesting habitat for critically endangered birds like the White-naped crane (Grus vipio) and often destroy eggs, while dung in small lakes leads to eutrophication (algal blooms which consume available oxygen) and reduced food for swan geese (Anser cygnoides) and other waterbirds
  • ·        

Hunting and Wildlife trade

Honey Bee
Honey Bee

Bees: Bees like many other insects, could be classified as some of the most important creatures because they are responsible for plant pollination. (Over 80% of the worlds flowering plants. That’s how plants reproduce.

Due to climate change, pesticides, and destruction of habitat the bee’s are having many problems. But the bees kept by bee keepers could be worse off. The beekeepers steal their honey, as honey is in high demand not only for taste but also health benefits. And the bees are instead given high fructose corn syrup! What happens if you feed a lot of high fructose corn syrup? Look at Americans and you will see! That why there are so many FAT AMERICANS! Infact in developed countries the 3 leading causes of death come from smoking, drinking, and Eating!

If the honey bee dies out, there will be a lot worse problems like famine and hunger. As plant will no longer reproduce providing the fruits and seeds that other animals and people love to eat.

Saiga Antelope
Saiga Antelope

Saiga Antelope : is critically rare. Population decrease is mostly impacted by harsh natural conditions of frequently occurred drougths and dzud, heavy snow falls, habitat degradation caused by livestock (overgrazing/unsustainable pasture use, competition for water) and poaching and illegal trade of horn as well as attacks of predators/carnivores.  Driven by demand from the Chinese medicinal market for the horn of the Saiga antelope, the Mongolian population dropped by 85 percent in 10 years, from over 5,000 to under 1000.

Gray Wolf
Gray Wolf

Gray Wolf: Wolves are persecuted Due to preying on herders sheep because they have destroyed all other food sources. And due to hunting and trade, especially with China in the months prior to the Lunar New Year, when wolf pelts are considered prestigious gifts. Lack of protection in some soums hinders determination of legality and law enforcement.

Saker Falcon
Saker Falcon

Saker falcon: Valued in the Middle East for their hunting prowess, collection of live falcons has resulted in a decline in breeding pairs from 3,000 to 2,200 over a 5 year period from 1999 to 2004 But like many captive birds only 1 out of 5 birds will survive the shock and treatment of being captured and transported..

Bactrain Camel
Bactrain Camel

Bactrian Camel: The species has suffered greatly at the hands of humans. It has lost habitat to mining and industrial development, and has been forced to compete with introduced livestock for food and water. Farmers hunt the camel for this reason, and many individuals are lost every year when the camels migrate out of protected areas and onto land set aside for grazing.

Snow Leopard
Snow Leopard

Snow leopards In recent over decade, the heads of livestock were significantly increased and overgrazing was spread in mountainous areas. As a result, the Ibex and Argali, prey species of snow leopard, have been pushed away from their suitable habitats.  Thus, it negatively impacts on the species existence within its suitable habitats and lead to the habitat loss. Due to lack of wild preys (e.g. marmot, ibex, argali, and snowncock), the snow leopard attacks at domestic livestock.

Red Deer
Red Deer

Red Deer: traditional Chinese medicine demand for the velvet of red deer antlers resulted in a 92 percent decline in Mongolian populations, from 130,000 in 1986 to estimates as low as 8,000 in 2004.

They used to be present in the world’s oldest national park (before even Yellowstone) but due to corruption, no more…

Siberian Marmot
Siberian Marmot

Siberian marmot: The Siberian marmot Marmota sibirica is a social, colonial-living rodent that ranges widely throughout northern Asia. In Mongolia the species has declined substantially in recent years due to overharvesting for fur, meat and body parts, used locally and traded illegally in international markets. The Siberian marmot is often considered a keystone species because its burrows appear to represent an important resource for a variety of taxa, including carnivores Demand for marmot furs resulted in decreases in the population from 20 million to 5 million between 1990 to 2002

Takhi or Przewalskii horse
Takhi or Przewalskii horse

Takhi or Przewalskii horse is believed to be the only true wild horse. During the 1930s the species experienced a dramatic decline in its population, eventually becoming extinct in the wild. Threatened by hunting and competition for grazing lands, the takhi was forced from its natural habitat. From the grassy plains of Mongolia, the takhi retreated into increasingly barren areas.

Unsustainable Fishing

Threats to local fish species include overfishing, pollution from mining and other industrial activities, and habitat degradation and loss from either drying up of water bodies due to climate change or extraction of water for industrial uses (MNET 2009). Of these, the Mongolian Fish Red List notes that overfishing is the primary threat for a number of endangered species including the Siberian sturgeon, Hovsgol grayling, and taimen.

Fish is not a traditional part of the Mongolian diet but the country has been exporting it to both China and Russia since the early 1990s.

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