Mongolia's Gobi Bear: an Endangered Sub-Species

Only 30-50 Gobi bears may survive, but even this estimate is uncertain. They are known to persist only in the region of the Great Gobi Strictly Protected Area of southwestern Mongolia. Because of their present low population size, restricted range, and limited available habitat, these bears are listed in the Mongolian Red Book of Endangered Species, a categorization that was validated by the bear’s designation as Critically Endangered in the November 2005 Mongolian Biodiversity Databank Assessment Workshop.  Additionally, these bears must now accommodate large-scale mineral extraction in their range.

As a part of the Gobi Bear Project, Craighead Beringia South has helped to initiate research and to develop science-based strategies that are effective for the recovery of Mongolia’s Gobi bear population from its present Critically Endangered status.

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Publications and Data

Gobi Bear Population Survey 2009. Final Report May 2011. Odbayar Tumendemberel, Michael Proctor, Harry Reynolds, Luvsamjamba Amgalan, Tuya Tserenbataa, Mijiddorj Batmunkh, Derek Craighead, Nyambayar Yanjin, David Paetkau.

Presence of the neurotoxic amino acids β -N-methylamino-L-alanine(BMAA) and 2,4-diamino-butyric acid (DAB) in shallow springs from the Gobi Desert. 2009. D. Craighead, J.S. Metcalf, S.A. Banack, L. Amgalan, H.V. Reynolds, and M. Batmunkh. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, 10: 1, 96 — 100.

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Mongolian Academy of Science
The Mongolian Ministry of Natural Resources
Great Gobi Special Protected Area biologists and officials