This year’s Expedition will travel in June to the northeastern mountains and steppes to explore the habitat and observe and record, we hope, six species of cranes: Siberian, Red-crowned (japanese), White-napped (all endangered), Hooded (vulnerable), Demoiselle and Common/Eurasian. Some nest or are suspected to nest in the area we are going, so there should be chicks to see.
The Expedition is timed so that we can attend the first-ever International Crane Festival, to be held on June 13, and which is a collaborative effort of researchers from Mongolia, China and Russia. This will be an unparalleled opportunity to meet the scientists, learn about their work, support crane conservation and also the local community. We will also travel south to see Mongolian gazelles, which sometimes gather in herds numbering many thousands.
This is intended as a FIELDWORK TRIP FOR ARTISTS who are ready for something different. You will be among the first western artists to come to Mongolia and see and record the countryside and wildlife. If you’ve always wanted to do wildlife art fieldwork and/or learn to sketch and paint in the field, you’re welcome to join us. I will offer instruction as needed and desired.
If you choose to join the Expedition, I will send you more specific information about travel logistics in Mongolia, including a copy of my Mongolia packing list if you wish. Space is limited to nine participants (including Susan). There are currently only three spots left (as of 2/26/14)
Please fill out the contact form below for costs and if you have any questions. A $200 deposit will hold your place. I hope you will join us!
Why Mongolia? The Land of Blue Skies is the last great undiscovered wildlife destination and also an art destination that richly deserves to be better known. Artists are respected in Mongol society and held in high regard.
But the biggest difference is that you can Get Out Of Your Car anywhere you want to. The whole country, twice the size of Texas, is available for walking, hiking, location painting and sketching. With a GPS and proper clothing, you can take off on your own in almost all the reserves and parks.
There are no tropical diseases like malaria or parasites to worry about. The only poisonous snake keeps to itself (I’ve only seen two in eight trips and that was in one location).
Except for the forested mountains, wildlife is visible and includes takhi/Przwalski’s horse, argali (the world’s largest mountain sheep), Siberian ibex, saiga antelope, corsac and red fox, tolai hares, pikas, jerboas, hedgehogs, Siberian marmots and, believe it or not, multiple species of wild hamsters. There are also a few reptile and amphibian species. Mongolia is one of the world’s birding hotspots, with 427 species recorded, including quite a few that are endangered. It is not unusual to see golden eagles, steppe eagles, black kites, kestrels, upland buzzards, eurasian black vultures and demoiselle cranes by the side of the road.
The Mongol people, though generally shy upon a first meeting, are gregarious, generous and welcoming. They appreciate attempts to speak their language and any efforts visitors make to learn and follow their customs.