Saturday, May 14, 2011

Mary Steppling, my colleague and the Head of the Education Division at CC, and two of our education students, Laura Miller and Nicole Hill are here with me in Mongolia. My friend Doko arranged our visit to Hustai National Park. The park contains beautiful landscape, many varieties of plants and much wildlife, including the famous wild horses.
We left on a Friday afternoon, and after a wild ride, arrived at our ger camp.













On Saturday morning, we headed out on a Mongolian safari!

The wild horse, tahki, are the ancestors of modern horses. They have 66 chromosomes, while other horses all have 64. They were "discovered" and then many were transported to zoos and parks and Europe, eventually there were tahkis in many zoos around the world. Meanwhile, they became extinct in Mongolia. In the early 1990s, Holland sent back several tahkis, and they were repatriated at three sites across the country, Hustai now having the largest population - 230 horses and 8 new babies this spring, so far.



















Many pictures were taken.

Mary, Doko and Lynne, enjoying incredible weather, beautiful landscape and just having fun.









A marmot! They are quick, and dive into their holes before pics can be snapped - patience was rewarded with a head popping above ground - Gotcha!





We were told that the red deer were too far away to find. A short while later, we were surrounded by them! Doko said that our finding so many wild animals was a sign of great luck for the coming year - works for me!

































Deer peeking over the hill! Yes, we're still here.







Wow! First we saw a yak, and later, we literally ran into Yots of Yaks!



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