Target: Achim Steiner, Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme
Goal: Protect wild Bactrian camels from hunting and illegal mining in their last remaining habitat.
There are fewer than one thousand individual wild Bactrian camels left in the world. Many of these individuals live in protected breeding program areas, while others migrate from reserve to reserve where they face many dangers. Crossbreeding, hunting and habitat loss threaten to completely wipe out this unique species. Competition for grazing land with livestock has drastically brought down the numbers of wild camels since 1986.
Wild Bactrian camels are genetically separate from the domesticated Bactrian camel. Unlike its domesticated cousin, the wild camel is capable of drinking salt water, which aids in its survival in the Gobi desert. Cross breeding is a major issue for the wild Bactrian camel and could result in its extinction. Captive breeding programs have been implemented to try and save this species. Unfortunately, camels have a rather long gestational period and are only able to give birth every two years.
Habitat loss has been another major issue for the wild Bactrian. Pressures from the domestic Bactrian camel and grazing cattle have greatly diminished the once vast range of the wild camel. The wild camel is also seen as a nuisance and a direct competitor to the domestic camel in terms of available grazing land. Every year migrating wild camels are shot by farmers or miners when they cross over the Chinese-Mongolian border and into unprotected land.
There is hope for saving the wild Bactrian camel from extinction. China and Mongolia have been working together to try and save this unique species, but time and money aren’t on their side. By signing this petition below you will be urging United Nations Environment Programme Executive Director Achim Steiner to provide resources to help save the wild Bactrian Camel.
Dear Achim Steiner,
The wild Bactrian camel faces certain extinction unless we act now. There are fewer than one thousand individuals left and most of these individuals have been driven to a small range of the Gobi desert where they face hunting, livestock competition and a diminishing habitat. The wild Bactrian camel is genetically different from its domestic counterpart. Crossbreeding is a serious problem that is threatening to wipe out the unique genes of the wild camel.
These camels also face poaching by miners who subsist off of the camels. Every year an estimated twenty to thirty-five camels are killed by poachers during their migration from the protected Gobi desert.
There is hope for the wild Bactrian camel. I urge you to lend your resources to the efforts that are already taking place in China and Mongolia. The United Nations must rally when the world’s animals are threatened.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Yaan