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There is now only one breed of truly wild horse walking on our planet, Przewalski’s Horse, and the last wild specimens were seen in Mongolia in 1966.


Fight (For Survival). Chased oxidized aluminum panel in alder frame. 11x9x2 ins. 2014.

Fight (For Survival) shows a typical Przewalski-like horse on the right, fighting with a horse showing a much more domesticated profile (left). This was the battle experienced by the dominant male in “Wild Horses Return To China” (1) when the herd of newly-released Przewalski’s met up with the inquisitive (and hungry) domesticated horses brought into the release station territory by nomadic herdsmen. 

Captive breeding programs have provided horses for re-introduction into the ancestral ranges in Mongolia and western China. Since the first releases in 1990, Mongolia has built up a herd of 115 ’takhi’ (the local name for the horses), with 76 born into the wild preserves set aside for them to roam. Listening to the research scientists (2), it appears that the first rule of this fight is that we need to talk… To consider the problem of habitat loss that is occurring even as captive breeding continues; compare this to the value of protecting native environments as a priority. After all, if we don’t, will we ever have anywhere to release animals back into?

(1) http://youtu.be/Cg2tVKvKp1A Pure Nature Specials Wild Horses Return To China.
(2) http://youtu.be/4tMFyL5PRr0 Science Bulletins: The Last Wild Horse—The Return of Takhi to Mongolia, American Museum Of Natural History.

This picture is one of a 17-piece installation, "In Dreams", depicting horse behaviours, on show at the Alberta Craft Council in Edmonton, Alberta, until December 24, 2014.

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