Categories
Camel stories World Camel Day 22 June

Are the Camels Conquering the World?

By B. Faye

A camel story by Dr. Bernard Faye from France. Dr. Faye is a very experienced and knowledgeable person in camel’s world. He is the founding member and the chairman of the International Society of Camelids Development and Research (ISOCARD). http://www.isocard.net/images/executive_members//FILE25827f644772f9e.pdf

The story about the camel future – Animal of future

In continuation of the series of camel stories from different regions of the world

Camel Beyond Their Cradle of Domestication

From their places of domestication 5000 years ago, dromedary and Bactrian camels moved far away from their cradle (origin of domestication). Two main parameters can explain this camel stock moving: The aridification of the Sahara starting just before the Christian Era. The trade routes in Asia from China to the Mediterranean coast (Silk Road) and across Sahara from the Maghreb to the Sahel, using camels’ caravans.

Dr. Bernard Faye

FAO Statistics and the Camels

The world statistics (site FAOstat) available since 1961 only, show a regular increase of the camel population (approximatively 3%/year), but with different demography patterns.

Global Demographic Trends in Camels

Globally, we can distinguish a Trend as

  1. Countries with a decline of the camel population, but except in India, this decline was stopped since the years 2000’s for example in China, Turkey, and Middle-east (5 % of the total camel population) (5 % of the total camel population)
  2. Countries with a regular growth of their population (North and Horn of Africa, Pakistan, and Central Asia) (50 % of the total camel population)
  3. Countries with important increase after slight decline which concern Syria and Bahrein only (1.5 % of the total camel population)
  4. Countries with sudden increase after a long regular growth (Sahel countries and Arabian Peninsula) ( 43.5 % of the total camel population)

New implantations are also observable

After importing some camels in Australia in the XIXth century, a large camel population is nowadays present in this country. Camels were also imported in arid countries of Southern Africa (Namibia, Botswana). But a recent keen interest can be observed in Western countries (USE, Europe), mainly for touristic attraction, but more and more for milk production.

Globally, it is expected that climatic changes are giving a chance for camels to take more place in the future world.

Dr. Faye
Categories
General about camel

Camel is a Solution, Not a Problem

Camel and the Power of Adaptation

Camel is a precious animal genetic resource, highly adapted to the harsh and hostile ecosystems. Camels rely on woody and scanty vegetation and efficiently convert them into precious food (milk & meat) and other items (wool, manure, bones, etc.). The camel is composed of unique DNA, making it the most efficient biological machine both in the consumption of inputs and production of the outputs.

A Group of Brela Camels
Highly Adapted Brela Camel of Pakistan

Camel is an Efficient Biological Machine

The camel produces in harsh environments where other animals are difficult to survive. In the climate change scenario, the camel is the most suitable animal to be used as an agent of food security. Camel relies on the marginal lands which are unable to produce crops or support agrifarming. Water is the major limiting factor of drylands and camel is the most efficient animal in the water economy (lowest water footprint). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4h1E7WHKds

Camel Relies on the Woody Vegetation
Camel is the beauty of the desert

Camel is Neglected

Unfortunately, camel is always neglected while formulating policies for food security under climate change context. Recently, the Australian government decided to kill camels for water conservation. One can just realize how stupid this act is as the camel is the solution, not a problem. I hereby share the link of a film, you will weep to see the massacre of camel shoot. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V61_07V1jC4

The Camels love Tree Vegetation
The Camels are Happy Browsers

Camel is under threat in its natural habitats as well and one of the best examples is the camel sinking in the Rajasthan desert. https://camel4all.blog/2017/09/25/a-beautiful-camel-heritage-is-sinking/

There are many reasons for this sad state of the situation, all are man-made. The bushfire in the Australian continent is not because of the camel but the soaring heat because of climate change.

Utilization is the Best Conservation

It is the utmost need of time to conserve camel with the perspectives of camel herders, climate scientists, and food security activists. But the top priority must go the camel keepers as they are one in all. Utilization is the best conservation. The Australian government should take the camel as an opportunity but not a threat. Camel milk (top priority) and meat can be good tools for its utilization and ultimately conservation.