Kyrgyzstan In Pictures

On August 8, 2014 by Tim Newman


Kyrgyzstan - Animals - Boy on camel

A hunter releases golden eagle in the village of Bokonbayevo, south-east of Bishkek

Falconry is a big part of Central Asian life. The birds are pets, family, friends and hunting companions.


If you like goats have a go on these:



This is the only picture of a Kyrgyz ibex I could find that didn’t have a grinning hunter stood over its bloodied corpse.

Kyrgyzstan - Animals - Ibex Kyrgyzstan - Animals - Snow Leopard Kyrgyzstan - Animals - Spider

The Taigan is a dog species that has historically been favoured in Kyrgyzstan. Numbers are thought to be as low as 300 individuals now that hunting is less of a necessity. Taigans are praised for their single minded determination and their ability to scale steep slopes like a mountain goat.

Kyrgyzstan - Animals - Taigan 2

Taigan don’t need much attention and they can do without water and food for long periods of time. Once they’ve killed the prey they don’t slash into it like more highly strung dogs, they simply protect it and wait for their master to come along.

Kyrgyzstan - Animals - Taigan

I’ll finish off with a dark spot: every year in Kyrgyzstan there’s a hunting festival. Everyone gets their dogs and eagles out and shows off how good they are at killing things. One of the main events is wolf baiting. They tie up a wolf and set either an eagle or a dog on it until one of them is dead, normally the wolf of course, because he’s tied up. So that’s fairly barbaric. But it wasn’t long ago that Elizabeth I blocked Whitehall’s attempt to ban bear baiting from London, so it’s a bit rich of us to turn our noses up I guess.

Kyrgyzstan - Animals - Wolf Hounds Attack Chained wolf

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