Confusing domestic Bactrian camel with wild camel detrimental to latter's survival: study-Xinhua

Confusing domestic Bactrian camel with wild camel detrimental to latter's survival: study

Source: Xinhua| 2022-06-23 11:54:45|Editor: huaxia

LONDON, June 22 (Xinhua) -- Confusing the well-known domestic Bactrian camel with its wild and rare counterpart can have a detrimental effect on the wild camel's chances of survival, said a new study released Wednesday, the World Camel Day.

Differentiating wild camels from their domestic sister species is a key step in helping protect the critically endangered camel species from extinction, said the study led by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), the Wild Camel Protection Foundation, the University of Kent and the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna.

"With less than 950 known to exist in the wild, the wild camel (Camelus ferus) survives only in Mongolia and China," the ZSL said on its website, introducing the new study.

"By diminishing public perception of the extinction risks wild camels face, they don't receive the conservation attention they need," said the ZSL.

Climate change is one of the biggest threats to the wild camel, said Anna Jemmett, a researcher at the ZSL's Institute of Zoology and the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology at the University of Kent and the Wild Camel Protection Foundation.

"The wild camel only survives in Mongolia and China, it is critically endangered with less than 1000 left," Jemmett, lead author of the study, told Xinhua.

Most people "don't know this amazingly well adapted creature survives in one of the harshest habitats in the world. They also don't know that it is genetically distinct and a separate species to the domestic Bactrian camel. Therefore, they don't know it is threatened with extinction," said Jemmett.

"The more people who know about the wild camel, the more there are to appreciate it. If we care about it then we can save it," she added.