Friday, May 13, 2011

Ethiopia's Animals

Ethiopia has a wide range of wild-life. With a very diverse fauna, the wild-life also differs from the different parts of the country. The mountains in the northern parts, the desert areas and the fertile, green south.
It is also interesting to note that there are many endemic animals in Ethiopia. This means that they are native to the region, some of them are only found in Ethiopia. Among these we can mention the Walia Ibex, a mountain goat that is close to extintion. It lives in the mountainous regions in the north, but only a few hundred animals are left. One reason is that is poaching, but the other reason is a very common threat to animals everywhere. Man is changing the habitat, by means of deforestation and agriculture. In fact, even if the number of the Walia would increase, there is not much space for them. How terrible.
There are also many birds in Ethiopia, migrating ones and permanent. Out of the 800 species of birds, a very large number (29) are endemic. Just to mention a few: Blue-winged goose, White-tailed swallow and Abyssinian catbird.
A very popular animal name is Nyala. This is the name of an antelope, and the name is derived from Swahili and Zulu! The kind found in Ethiopia is also referred to as Mountain Nyala. One of the most common insurance companies in Ethiopia is called Nyala Insurance. There is also a restaurant with the name Nyala in Vancouver, which serves African food, and another one in Los Angeles!
Ethiopia is not so developed yet when it comes to safaris, but they are working on it. Word has it that the right to develop the National Parks is being given on a lease to foreigners. Hopefully this will mean more opportunities to see Ethiopia's fantastic wild-life at close range!

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