EAZA Ex situ Programme (EEP)

Somali wild ass

(Equus africanus somalicus)

Olivier Pagan
Institution:   Zoologischer Garten Basel

EAZA Member Area


basel zoo

IUCN Red List status

IUCN Red List CR


Programme roles

Direct Conservation icon  Insurance
: The Somali wild ass is listed as Critically Endangered and the EAZA population will be managed as an insurance population.

 Capacity Building
The EEP will work together with Eritrean and Ethiopian PhD students and local scientist to build capacity for in situ research that involves local communities. This will be in close collaboration with the IUCN SCC Equid group.

 Research (cryopreservation)
As Somali wild ass is Critically Endangered and the availability of new founders for the EEP is limited and uncertain the EEP will investigate opportunities for cryopreservation. 
Indirect Conservation icon  Research (Veterinary)
Somali wild ass is prevalent to Equine Herpes Virus and sarcoid tumors.  Within the EEP veterinary research will continue into these diseases to develop a vaccine.

The programme will implement small scale fundraising to contribute to high priority in situ projects or IUCN SSC Specialist Group activities.
Non Conservation icon  Education
The programme will provide education materials for EAZA Members to highlight that the Somali wild ass is the ancestor of the domestic donkey.

Programme numbers

In October 2020 the Somali wild ass EEP had 167 animals in 38 institutions


Programme highlights