Saturday, June 21, 2014

Asian Unicorn Spotted

Like a ghost that wanders through the thick forests of Vietnam and Laos, the Saola, which looks like a mixture between an antelope and an ox, has baffled researchers and zoologist for years. This creature has kept itself hidden for so long that the last footage of it was taken more than a decade ago.

Dubbed as the “Asian unicorn”, the Saola actually has two horns. It’s called a unicorn because it’s rarely ever seen. Cameras placed all over the forest of the Annamite Mountains by the World Wildlife Fund, together with the Vietnamese government, finally got a few shots of the animal. According to Van Ngoc Thinh, WWF country director for Vietnam, they were in disbelief when they saw the photos.
This rare species was discovered during the early 1990. They’re said to live in the areas that separate Vietnam and Laos. The discovery of the Saola was a first in more than half a century. Most newly discovered animals were small, but the Saola actually has the size of a large ox. Although it’s secretive nature has given it a funny nickname, it also has given reserchers a hard time to get any information about its population members and even its basic biology. According to WWF director of species protectionBarney Long, conservationists have a difficult time protecting the Saola’s population because they don’t really know where these animals live.

It’s said that there are around 250 to 300Saolain the wild. It currently is on the IUCN Red List, however this still does not stop hunters from killing this rare creature.

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