Worsening Crisis in Mongolia ~ 2 Million Livestock Dead

From Bitterroot Badger…

International aid agencies are now estimatin that up to 20 million domestic animals—half a Mongolia’s entire herd—may perish before there’s some let-up in the extreme cold and forage-coverin snow. Tens of thousands of Mongolians are at risk from starvation, illness, and rock-bottom poverty. Imagine for a moment you lived in Tosontsengel, in north-central Mongolia near Lake Huvsgul. This week, your average high temperature will be about -20F/-29C with nighttime lows down to -54F/-48C. See the forecast for yourself. Now imagine yourself living there as a nomadic herder, and how hard it would be to keep you and your family alive under those relentless conditions, much less the herd animals upon which your general livelihood depends. Some, they say, are watching helplessly as up to 50 of their cattle a night are freezin to death.

From the Cambridge Mongolia Development Appeal…

Some 70% of all herders have less than 200 animals and 50% less than 100. They will be the worst affected and the ones to lose all they have, needed to maintain a basic livelihood. Even worse, many are running out of heating and cooking fuel for their gers, a mixture of wood and dung but that too is lost to them, meaning they are less able to care for themselves, families and children,  in Arctic-like conditions.

The current situation is alredy grim for a huge swathe of herders and animals in 12 aimags mostly all northern but including Dundgobi. It can well be imagined how desperate it is for those engulfed in widespread deep snow, temperatures as low as -47C in places; animals have no access to snow-encrusted pasture deep below, and dispersed over large areas made equally inacessible to the herders.

Up to 10th February – some 2 million animals have already perished, and the Mongolian government foresees this figure rising to 4 million by April.  In the previous dzuds 2000-2003 some 12 million died, and the current disaster is officially stated to be worse than that of 10 years ago.  Help is badly needed.

Bitterroot Badger’s Bozeman Buddhist Blog has been posting updates concerning this crisis as well as supplies some backing information on the daily trials and tribulations of life on the steppes.  This is a rather unknown plight and the only reason that the Badger known about it is through contact he has in Mongolia.  No celebrities to announce this cause or floods of reporters.  It is up to the grassroots bloggers to get the word out there.  Even if you don’t wish to donate, please feel free to copy this post and place it on your own blog to help spread awareness.

For more info check out these posts…

The easiest way to contribure ~ If you feel so motivated ~ is through SPANA (Society for Protection of Animals Abroad) a partner of CAMDA and they do accept US Dollars.

Cheers,

John

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2 thoughts on “Worsening Crisis in Mongolia ~ 2 Million Livestock Dead

  1. Thanks for this, Hoss, truly. FWIW, tho, I’m hearing that Sky News may have jumped the gun a little, and the 20,000,000 estimate is pretty high. The Mongolian government has put its estimates at 4-6 mil before winter’s over. But still, that’s a crushing loss for Mongolia’s herders, many of whom already live close to the edge. And who knows? Springtime weather in Mongo is notoriously volatile, so anything could happen. Anyway, thanks again.

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