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73 endangered antelopes slaughtered by poachers in Kazakhstan, police launch probe

June 26 2014, 10:33

Police department of Akmola region has launched a criminal probe as 73 corpses of saigas found, the police said, ca-news.org reports.

The incident occurred in Egindykol district. Police first reported of 14 dead saigas, however as a result of the investigation, they found 73 corpses in total with horns cut off.

14 corpses were sent to expertise for identification of the cause of death of animals, which at first was thought to be poisoning by chemicals used for treating the fields, the press service of Akmola department of internal affairs said.

Now police say it was poaching.

Saiga, classified as critically endangered by the IUCN, is an antelope which originally inhabited a vast area of the Eurasian steppe zone.

An estimated total number of 50,000 saigas survive today in Kalmykia, three areas of Kazakhstan and in two isolated areas of Mongolia.

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