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Animals & Attractions

PRZEWALSKI'S WILD HORSE

Equus caballus przewalskii

Przewalski's Wild Horse

In our Collection

We currently have a small herd of Przewalski's wild horses at the Park.

Where to see them:

They can be found in the main drive through reserve. You can either take your own vehicle or enjoy a guided tour with our Land Rover Tour.

Audio guide:

Please find below an excerpt on our Przewalski's herd from our Main Reserve audio guide:

Threats and Conservation

After they became extinct in the wild, the few hundred horses in various zoos around the world were managed very carefully to ensure that a genetically healthy population was maintained. In the 1990s, a number of reintroduction programmes began and continue to the present day. The return of the Przewalski's horse to its natural environment is a success story for conservation and, despite ongoing problems, it is hoped that at least two self-sustained populations will soon be a reality. Currently the Przewalski’s horse is being reintroduced into two main sites in Mongolia and they have re-established themselves well.

For information on the reintroduction programme in Mongolia, go to: http://www.takhi.org/en/

 

Find out more

Status

Not Endangered NE
Data Deficient DD
Least Concern LC
Near Threatened NT
Vulnerable VU
Endangered EN
Critically Endangered CR
Extinct in the wild EW
Extinct EX

Endangered

For more info on classifications visit www.iucnredist.org

Size

Population

Population increasing, last assessed IUCN October 2014

Habitat

  • Grasslands

    Grasslands

Diet

In The Wild

Przewalski's wild horse (Equus ferus przewalskii), or takhi, are the only true living wild horse. They were discovered and identified in the 1870’s by the Russian explorer, Nicolai Przewalski.

They have a stocky body with strong, short legs, a short neck and a powerful jaw. The back and sides are tan to greyish-brown in colour, there is a dark stripe along the back, and their manes are erect.

Most of their time is spent foraging, as their preferred food, grasses and other plants, have a low nutritional content. They occur in harem groups led by a dominant stallion. Breeding season occurs in May or June with gestation taking 11 months and foals are able to stand as soon as one hour after birth.

The last authenticated wild sighting was in 1969 and they thereafter were believed to have become extinct in the wild. Habitat degradation, human activities including hunting and conflict, along with competition with domestic livestock for water and forage were all thought to be responsible for driving the species to extinction. However, thanks to conservation efforts by the international zoo community, it has been possible to reintroduce this species back into the wild. Although those reintroduced populations still face threats; primarily that of hybridisation with domestic horses, along with competition for food.

Meet our Przewalkski's Wild Horse