Hustai National Park
Name: Hustai National Park
Location: Argalant, Altanbulag and Bayanhangai of the Tov province, Mongolia
Reason to Visit: Home to Przewalski's horses in the wild, which is considered to be the last and only remaining wild horse species in the world
Duration: more than an hour
Our Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Hustai National Park is located in the middle of Mongolia, 100 kilometers west from Ulaanbaatar. The establishment of Hustai National Park is to protect the Przewalski's horses and other endangered plants and animals. Hustai National Park is a different National Park, except for the nature scenery, it is a wildlife park. The landscapes in the Hustai National Park are spectacular, including rolling mountains, white birches and endless grassland. There are wolves, eagles, wild horses and red deer. And the animals in the park form a complete ecological chain. Hustai National Park is also a significant habitat for biodiversity conservation. You can enjoy the beautiful natural scenery as well as learn about the wildlife knowledge in the Hustai National Park.
The Disappearance of the Przewalski's Horses
The Przewalski's horse, which is called takhi in Mongolian, is the last and only remaining wild horse species in the world. Przewalski's horses were last seen in Mongolia's Gobi region. In 1879, the specie of Przewalski's horse was first found. And in 1881, this specie was named Equus Przewalskii by Poliakov. Due to the killing and destruction of habitat bu humans, the number of the Przewalski's horses dropped off sharply. And they live in the Gobi Desert region, lack of foods and water source. They are likely to meet the low temperatures and snowstorms.
In 1960s, the wild Przewalski's horses were claimed to be extinct by Mongolia. And in 1970s, the wild Przewalski's horses were claimed to be extinct in Xinjiang, China. And most people think that if there are any remaining wild Przewalski's horses in nature, the number is too small to form a population, so it is not enough to ensure the survival of a species, so the wild Przewalski's horses are likely to have disappeared in nature.
Rebirth of the Przewalski's horses
In 1977, Protection Foundation of Przewalski's horses was set up. They established a database of Mongolian wild horse lineages records. Besides, they suggested to release back the Przewalski's horses kept in zoos and privately-held parks to the nature. In 1988, the Hustai National Park was set up to be a reserve. In 1992, 16 Przewalski's horses were shipped to Hustai National Park from Netherlands. The reintroduction of the Mongolian breed of Przewalski's horses was successful.
The Foundation transported 2 batches of the Przewalski's horses to the Hustai National Park in 1994 and 1996. It is on this basis that the Zoological Society of London formally applied to IUCN in 2005 to change the protection status of Przewalski's horses in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species from Extinct in the Wild(EW) to Endangered(EN). And Hustai National Park becomes home to Przewalski's horses.
Visit the Groups of Przewalski’s Horses
Many tourists come to visit the Hustai National Park to see the Przewalski's Horses because Mongolia is the only place in the world where Przewalski's horses exist within their historic range. But it is not easy to see them at anytime in the park. The Przewalski's horses will go to springs and streams to drink water along a fixed route at dawn and dusk. So it is recommended that to see the Przewalski's horses at dawn or dusk.
The Przewalski's horses are agile and with high alertness. They are good at running. And they often occur in groups of 5-20 Przewalski's horses, leaded by a strong male Przewalski's horse. But it is possible that a Przewalski's horse will appear in individual.
Visit other Rare or Endangered Animals
Except for Przewalski's horses, there are other animals in the Hustai National Park. You may see herds of animals running freely in the grassland, like cows, deer, wild sheep and marmots. And sometimes you may meet the lonely fox. Some animals appear in herds, and some occur individually. The marmots like digging holes and they are very cute. Hustai National Park is a good place to experience the biodiversity of Mongolia and the harmony between humans and the nature.
Enjoy the Spectacular Steppe
Though Hustai National Park is a wild life reserve, the scenery here is very splendid. The main topography of the Hustai National Park is gentle and rolling mountains. As a grassland reserve, you can experience the expanse of steppe and freedom. Standing in the middle of the vast grassland and you will feel totally free in the wide open spaces.
Admire the Beauty of the White Birches
You will also see the white birches. The beauty of white birches is different in summer and autumn. If you come to the white birches in summer, you must be amazed at the endless and splendid green. Immerse yourself in the green white birches and you will be healed. Of course, white birches in autumn are memorable in golden. You will feel everything is golden in the white birches in autumn, the leaves, the grass and even the sunlight and the air. Taking photos in the golden white birches will be fantastic as if you were in the oil painting. When the wind blows, it is marvellous while the golden leaves are falling.