Ovis ammon ammon

Altai argali

Phylum Chordates (Chordata)
Class Mammals (Mammalia)
Order Even-hoofed mammals (Artiodactyla)
Family Hollow-horned ruminants (Bovidae)
Genus Sheep (Ovis)
Species Authority Linnaeus, 1758
Summary Status: endangered (Category I), its range and population size are decreasing. This sheep previously inhabited the southern and western Altai mountains, but by the beginning of the 20th century, it had disappeared from the western Altai. Currently, it can be found only in the Kurchum Range of the Altai mountains. This sheep lives in alpine tundra and in mountainous steppe at an altitude of 800 to 3,000 meters. The total population in Kazakstan is estimated at 50-60 individuals. Factors contributing to its disappearance are poaching and cattle grazing in core ha-bitat areas. This species is not bred in Kazakstan, but is kept in the Experimental Biological Institute of the Russian Academy in Siberia. To preserve the species in Kazakstan it is necessary to develop the Markakol Reserve in the southern Kurchum mountains.

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