News (Saiga Conservation Alliance)
New Report on Mitigating Effects of Barriers to Migration
July 2013 - In cooperation and with funding from the Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS) and Flora & Fauna International (FFI), the Secretariat initiated a study to investigate the situation and the anticipated effects of infrastructure developments on Saiga antelopes in Kazakhstan, where a fence along the Kazakh-Uzbek border as well as two new railroads through Saiga habitat are being constructed. The report develops a set of recommendations for consideration by the Kazakh authorities. However, the solutions provided in the report are also applicable to other countries and species where similar developments take place.
The report “Saiga Crossing Options. Guidelines and Recommendations to Mitigate Barrier Effects of Border Fencing and Railroad Corridors on Saiga Antelope in Kazakhstan” by Kirk Olson can be downloaded here. There is also a Russian version.
Launch of Saiga Resource Centre
18 June 2013 - The Saiga Resource Centre (SRC) was launched in Astana, Kazakhstan, to provide an online forum both for experts involved in Saiga antelope conservation as well as for the interested public. The website will serve as an international coordination mechanism for the implementation of the Saiga MOU, as required by the Medium-term International Work Programme under the MOU.
The website has been developed by the Saiga Conservation Alliance (SCA) and the Association for the Conservation of the Biodiversity of Kazakhstan (ACBK), the two technical coordinators of the Saiga MOU, with support and funding from CMS and Switzerland. The website was launched and discussed during a technical meeting of the Saiga MOU community on 18 June 2013 in Astana, Kazakhstan.
[see Press Release]
Chinese Tradutional Medicine Association Engages with CMS Saiga MOU
5 March 2013 - At the CITES COP 16 held in March 2013 in Bangkok, CMS and CITES secretariats jointly organized a side event on Saiga conservation, during which Saiga range states and representatives from China and the Chinese Traditional Medicine Association (CTMA) stressed their interest to engage in and contribute more strongly in the conservation efforts under the CMS Saiga MOU, to enforce existing legislation and increase cooperation between in CTMA and range states of saiga antelopes.
[see Press Release]
Almost 5,000 Saiga Antelope Horns Confiscated in Kazakhstan
30 March 2012 - the Ministry of Agriculture of Kazakhstan reported the successful interception of a shipment of 4,704 saiga antelope horns (Saiga tatarica) in the Almaty region of the country. This arrest of a circle of wildlife traffickers had been prepared for several months and benefited from close cooperation of a number of agencies. Kazakhstan has shown considerable commitment in implementing the CMS Saiga Antelope Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), not only by establishing new protected areas, but also by recently amending national law to specifically target wildlife traffickers.
[see Press Release]
wins Whitley Award
to link to the webpage of the Daily Telegraph and
its video story of Elena winning one of the Whitley
Fund for Nature Awards. Elena is one of the key people
involved with the conservation of the Saiga Antelope.
Action Kicks Off for the Antelope from the Eurasian
21 February 2011 – Representatives
of wildlife management authorities in Kazakhstan and
experts came together 17-18 February in central Kazakhstan
to discuss the implementation of the CMS Memoranda
of Understanding on the Saiga Antelope (Saiga
spp.) and the Bukhara Deer (Cervus elaphus bactrianus).
The objectives of the Astana workshop convened by
the Committee of Forestry and Hunting of the Ministry
of Agriculture of Kazakhstan and the UNEP/CMS Secretariat,
was to set up the technical coordination for the Saiga
Memorandum (MoU), to agree priority activities for
saiga conservation in Kazakhstan and to assess the
current status of Bukhara Deer populations.
Traditional Chinese Medicine Industry in the Recovery
of the Saiga Antelope
Urumqi, China, 29 September - At
a workshop on the conservation and sustainable use
of the saiga antelope, representatives of the Traditional
Chinese Medicine (TCM) industry – which uses
saiga horn in several medical products – confirmed
their willingness to do their part in restoring wild
The objective of the workshop, convened
by the CITES Management Authority of China and the
Secretariats of CITES and CMS in Urumqi, Xinjiang
Uygur Autonomous Region, China (27-29 September 2010),
was to strengthen international cooperation among
consumer and range States and to provide a platform
for discussion between those managing in situ or ex
situ conservation activities and the Asian traditional
medicine industry. The idea of sharing conservation
efforts between consumer and range States is reflected
in Decisions adopted at the 15th meeting of the Conference
of the Parties to CITES (CoP15, Doha, 2010) and has
been envisaged since 2006 under the CMS Memorandum
of Understanding concerning 'Conservation, Restoration
and Sustainable Use of the Saiga Antelope' (CMS Saiga
Boost for 'Ugly Duckling' Antelope
Bonn, Geneva, 13 September 2010 - Under the
leadership of the Convention on Migratory Species
(UNEP/CMS), a broad alliance of government representatives
from Kazakhstan, Mongolia, the Russian Federation,
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, UN bodies, inter-governmental
organizations, non-governmental organizations and
local communities have come together to discuss and
agree on a new conservation strategy for the Saiga
During an international conference held in Ulaanbaatar,
Mongolia, the Central Asian States and the Russian
Federation agreed this week to include the Mongolian
Saiga antelope in an international Saiga agreement
concluded under the auspices of CMS. With Mongolia
signing the agreement, all Saiga antelopes, will benefit
from this international cooperation.
Mass Saiga Antelope Die-off
Bonn, 27 May 2010 - 12,000 saiga
antelopes have been reported to have suddenly died
in the Ural population in Western Kazakhstan. This
dramatic news is a serious blow for the critically
endangered species, which suffered a 90% collapse
primarily due to poaching in recent decades. The number
of dead animals is the equivalent of approximately
one third of the entire Ural population according
to the most recent spring estimate. The reported die-off
took place in mid-May when saiga give birth in mass
aggregations of thousands of females. The vast majority
of saiga carcasses are females and calves. The cause
of this catastrophe is not yet clear. A commission
has been set up by the Kazakh authorities to investigate
A news article dated 1 March
2010 from the Italian newspaper "Corriere
della Sera" highlighted the plight of the Saiga
Antelope. Click here
for the article (in Italian)
|The website of the Saiga Conservation
Alliance, a leading NGO specialising in the species
can be accessed here.
Look out for their e-newsletter which can be found on
their news page.