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Bizarre-Looking Breed of Antelope Is Spotted by Photographer in Russia

Animals

Bizarre-Looking Breed of Antelope Is Spotted by Photographer in Russia

This bizarre-looking long-nosed breed of antelope was spotted by a photographer as he hid inside a hide at a nature sanctuary.

Mogens Trolle, 50, captured the animals on camera up close at Stepnoi Nature Sanctuary in Southern Russia.

The wildlife biologist spent a week in a hide by a small lake on the Russian steppe to photograph the saiga – an endangered species of antelope living in Central Asia.

From November saigas travel up to 620 miles to their winter grounds in the south where they mate

Mr Trolle said: ‘The unique and critically endangered saiga with its giant nose is an antelope living on the arid plains of Central Asia.

‘It is generally quite difficult to get to see in the wild, let alone get close to — because of hunting it is extremely shy and will normally run off as soon as it detects a human.’

The animals’ unusual looking drooping nose covers their mouth to stop dust entering their lungs during their long migration in the summer.

And in the winter long nostrils warm cool air before it enters their lungs.

From November saigas travel up to 620 miles (1,000km) to their winter grounds in the south where they mate.

Mogens Trolle, 50, captured the bizarre animals on camera up close at Stepnoi Nature Sanctuary in Southern Russia
The animals' large drooping nose covers their mouth to stop dust entering their lungs during their long migration in the summer

Mr Trolle, from Denmark, has been a photographer for more than 25 years and specialises in close-up animal portraits.

‘It had long been a dream of mine to photograph the antelope and in May this year, I got the opportunity and privilege to spend one week in a hide by a small lake on the Russian steppe frequented by the saigas, more precisely in the Stepnoi Nature Sanctuary,’ he added.

‘Being in the hide allowed us to see the saigas up close in way not otherwise possible.

‘On the third morning in the hide we got to witness one of the most incredible wildlife spectacles I’ve ever seen – the saiga migration arrived.’

More than 3,000 saiga gathered at the sanctuary as Mr Trolle captured his photographs.

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