Two rare wild horses born in NW China, more expected

Source: Xinhua| 2017-04-24 20:10:56|Editor: Xiang Bo
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URUMQI, April 24 (Xinhua) -- Two foals were born at a wild horse breeding center in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, with more expected this year, researchers said Monday.

The birth of two female Przewalski's horses on Friday brought the total number at the research center to 363, said Zhang Hefan, a researcher at the center.

Foals are born in the spring and, according to Zhang, around a dozen foals of the endangered species are expected to be born this year.

Przewalski's horses historically lived on grasslands that are now part of China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and Mongolia. The species faced extinction after over-hunting from the early 19th Century.

The breed was reintroduced to Xinjiang and Gansu Province from stock captive-bred in Europe in the late 1980s, two decades after its extinction in the country.

The Xinjiang center brought 24 horses from the United Kingdom, the United States and Germany, from which around 600 horses have since been bred.

This year, the center brought six more Przewalski's horses from Europe to improve the genetic quality of the population.

There are currently 173 horses living in the wild within the 2,000 hectares of the center, the largest wild horse breeding center in Asia.