Neutron, The Radioactive Horse

radioactive horse

Since the Chernobyl disaster, humans have not been allowed to live in the exclusion zone due to the risk of radiation. Since the disappearance of people, wildlife has started to take over the exclusion zone. Other than some minor mutations, such as strange antler formations on deer and some species discoloration, the animal populations seems to be taking off. In fact, Chernobyl has become a place for scientists to study nature and radio-ecological consequences of nuclear disasters. Some even describe Chernobyl as a wildlife reserve.

People have treated the exclusion zone as a wildlife reserve for awhile. It has become a de facto nature preserve. In addition to studying the effects of radiation in a world absent of people, animals have been introduced as a conservation effort. The Przewalski’s Horse, or Dzungarian Horse, is a great example of this. They were introduced to the area in order to create some biodiversity, but the species took off and went from a few horses to over 200 in 2006. Since then poachers have been cutting their numbers down to an estimated 40-60. Lynx, brown bear and wolves have made similar comebacks in the area.

Below is a video of Przewalski’s Horses in the exclusion zone.

And here’s a video on the exclusion zone I really like:

 

Sources:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/nature/14277058

http://ilovehorses.net/history-2/the-wild-horses-of-chernobyl/

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/04/060418-chernobyl-wildlife-thirty-year-anniversary-science/

Image:https://www.google.com/search?q=Przewalski%27s+horse&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjhmZG0vrrMAhVHOSYKHdHXCLwQ_AUIBygB&biw=1366&bih=659#tbm=isch&q=Przewalski%27s+horse+in+chernobyl&imgrc=5PnQd2LpeOMvhM%3A

Horse Video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnL8ha3qrs0

Exclusion Zone Video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nf6ON6pbDDA

13 thoughts on “Neutron, The Radioactive Horse”

  1. I found this super interesting! We watched the video on the people who live in the area during class so learning about the animals that remain is cool. The horses are still really cute.

  2. It is crazy that a place where humans were not allowed to go to is not considered by some scientists to be a “wildlife reserve.” However, it is slightly concerning that there are a few mutations seen. Hopefully these are harmless and there won’t be any dangerous sci-fi mutated animals in Chernobyl.

  3. It’s fascinating that the wildlife and animals have been able to flourish in the area since the disaster, it just goes to show that we have a lot more to learn about the effects of radiation. I find it shocking that they actually introduced new wildlife to the area just to see the effects, but I suppose that is what is needed in order to further investigate the effects. Great post!

  4. Great post, I particularly like the ponies. Wildlife conservation is the silver lining on an otherwise terrible catastrophe. Are the Przewalksi horses exclusively found around Chernobyl, they look like they would make a great pet

  5. It’s interesting that both animals and humans have been able to survive in this area following the disaster. I wonder if there are health issues that we cannot see such a genetic problems that may have a long term effect on these populations. Regardless, it’s pretty cool that these horses have been able to make a comeback in the area.

    P.S. Horn deserves an A for the year due to his response to Lester’s comment.

      1. But mainly for these two things: 1) Getting Lenin stand in the foreground of the site; and 2) figuring out how to get Chernobyl, endangered wild horses and Top Gear into the same post. It’s impressive.

  6. This was an awesome post. I really enjoyed the film we watched in class about Chernobyl and the exclusion zone. I though you brought an intriguing and new dimension to the topic. I could be wrong, but I think Przewalski Horses are pretty endangered. Maybe their reintroduction to the area was as much intended to benefit them as it was the exclusion area.

  7. Very interesting post. Ironically, one of my roommates has been watching a show about scientists studying the animals in the radioactive areas. The show also covered people, typically older, returning to the area to live their lives. We watched a clip about this in class. The whole situation itself is interesting, I don’t think I could ever go near Chernobyl though, the idea of being exposed to any radiation at all is enough to deter me. The CIA just released a video they used as intelligence regarding the accident: https://www.youtube.com/watch?list=PLAFF2E827831733DF&v=atzvgpQfrLM

  8. Your post was very interesting. I wonder how dangerous it is to each animals that have been living in or had even passed through the zone. I also wonder if future generations of these animals will become some how more so immune to the negative effects of this radiation.

  9. Your post was very interesting and informative. It is helpful that you highlight the fact that humans have been banned from living in the area that was affected by Chernobyl. It is also amazing that scientists are using this area to study as an ecological habitat when it was considered such a tragedy.

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