Scimitar horned oryx
Animal parks that contribute to raise animals in captivity are:
• Bratislava zoo in Slovakia
• Dvur Kralove zoo in the Czech Republic
• Paris zoo, France
• La Palmire, France
• Parco Faunistico Le Cornelle, Italy
• Zoo Leipzig, Germany
• Zoo Plankendael, Flemish region, Belgium
NEW BLOOD FOR ENDANGERED SAHARIAN ANTELOPES
An important mission aimed to free antelopes bred in captivity in the south Tunisia desert.
On Wednesday 10th of March 1999, a sequence of unusual shipments travelled around Europe: from 7 zoological gardens in six European states, several trucks transported antelopes born in captivity towards Ostenda, Belgium. 14 scimitar-horned oryxes and two gazelles were carried by airplane to Djerba, Tunisia. Then, animals will be transferred to the Sidi Toui National Park in the south Tunisia desert.
These animals will form a group, which is basic for the regeneration of this endangered species. Initially, these animals will be kept inside fenced areas, where, according to Tunisian and international antelopes experts, might reproduce. When they will be able to group a suitable number of examples, they will be freed in their natural environment: the desert. In the meantime, a campaign for local population will be launched which aims to raise awareness about coexistence with antelopes. All our efforts are being made in order to ensure a safe and comfortable trip. Two operators and a veterinary will accompany them during the transfer from Ostenda to Tunisia and later, two experts will look after the animal during the one month quarantine and the adjustment to their new habitat. During this 5 months period they are going to educate the local staff of the national park and they will manage a research useful to provide precious advice for further similar efforts.
The Executive Secretary of the Bonn Congress about migrant species stated that it is going to be an even greater challenge for the world to prove that we can be more and more efficient in integrate once again wild animals in their own ecosystem, in juxtaposition with the past destructive action. We should notice that the preservation of animal species and plants in their own natural environment would be much cheaper and easier than their after extinction reintegration. He expressed his own admiration for people who spent more than an entire year preparing and organizing this project.
This mission is a part of a wider program, carried out by local governments of 14 states of Sahelo-Saharan, along with internationally famous experts, such as IUCN and WWF, in conformity with the congress about migrant species aimed to reintegrate groups formed by six species of antelopes in a area, which is bigger than the whole Australian continent.