Just an info:
updated 2:38 a.m. MT, Thurs., May 20, 2010

SOUTH HANGAY PROVINCE, Mongolia - They call it the zud, a prolonged period of heavy snows and paralyzing cold that adds to the challenges of living on a treeless
expanse nearly the size of Alaska. But this year’s zud followed a
punishing summer drought that stunted the grass and left Munkhbat
Lkhagvasuren’s herds emaciated and his family in debt after borrowing
money for fodder.

As the snow piled waist high this winter and temperatures plunged to 40 below zero, Mr. Lkhagvasuren crammed two dozen of the weakest goats and
sheep into his yurt. The unlucky ones, more than 1,000 animals, froze to
death in a great heap outside his front door. “I tried everything but
could not fight against nature,” he said tearfully in a recent
interview, the stench of rotting flesh overpowering despite a devilish
wind. “I am broken and lost.”

Mongolia and its 800,000 herders are reeling from the worst winter that anyone can remember. According to United Nations relief officials, nearly eight million cows, yaks, camels, horses, goats
and sheep died, about 17 percent of the country’s livestock. Even if
the spring rains arrive soon, 500,000 more animals are expected to
succumb in the coming weeks. ..."


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