The Syrian Wild Ass (Pictured Above) has been considered extinct since 1927. Yet in recent days a male of the species has been sighted in Syria.
The Syrian Wild Ass (Equus hemionus hemippus) is an extinct subspecies of Equus hemionus that ranged across Syria, Jordan and Iraq.Scientists are amazed at the fortitude of the specimen. It is amazing that this Ass has been able to survive the turmoil that the specimen has been subjected to.
The Syrian Wild Ass was the smallest form of Equidae and could not be domesticated. Its coloring changed with the seasons – a tawny olive coat for the summer months and pale sandy yellow for the winter.
Syrian Wild Ass
It is believed this is the animal described as the “wild ass” in several books of the Old Testament, including Job, Psalms, Sirach and Jeremiah. European travelers in the Middle East during the 15th and 16th centuries reported seeing large herds. However, its numbers began to drop precipitously during the 18th and 19th century due to overhunting, and its existence was further imperiled by the regional upheaval of World War I. The last known wild specimen was fatally shot in 1927 at Al Ghams near the Azraq oasis in Jordan, and the last captive specimen died the same year at the Vienna Zoo.
What is really strange is that the Syrian Wild Ass has been seen being protected by the American Jackass.