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Franz Leopold Schmelzer
Afrikas Wilder Westen - Namibias Wüstenpferde
51 min
Franz Leopold Schmelzer
Nature and Environment
In Africa‘s most arid desert only specialists are able to survive, such as the Oryx antelopes, the spotted hyena or the jackal. However, the Namib is also home to a species which originates in Europe, and which has been living here only for the last 100 years: the Namib horses. Africa’s only feral horses are relicts left by the diamond boom during the German colonial era. They were abandoned there, in the now ghost mining towns, which have been reconquered by the sand and now recall a “wild west” atmosphere. Approximately 200 horses of the original stock are still living there, defying aridity, heat, constant sand storms and the threat of scorpions, snakes and hyenas. Only an old blast hole, which once provided water for Lüderitz, the centre of the region and for the German railway, saves them from dying of thirst.