Equus kiang

A kiang lies on the sandy ground in Hellabrunn Zoo. IUCN Red List endangerment category: Least concern
  • Family
    Horses (Equidae)
  • Weight
    250 – 400 kg
  • Habitat
    Mountainous steppes, deserts and semi-deserts

Life at high altitude

Kiangs are native to the Tibetan Plateau, where they live at altitudes of 2,700 to 5,300 m. In summer, they roam the mountainous steppes and desert landscapes to fi nd food, either individually or in small groups. In bad weather, they retreat to lower-lying regions.

In the picture you can see a kiang in profile, he is looking to the right side of the picture.

Summer coat, winter coat

Kiangs undergo a coat change during the summer months to adapt to the warmer temperatures of their habitat. They have a chestnut brown coat, which changes to a short reddish brown in summer and a long darker brown in winter. The wild ass’ weight also varies with the seasons. During the summer they gain up to 40 kg to survive the harsh, barren winter.

The kiang is closely related to the Asiatic wild ass. However, it is actually a descendant of African wild asses, not Asian.