The history of national parks in Mongolia dates all the way back to 1778, giving the country the distinction of having the first national park in the world. Today, Mongolia is home to a number of national parks and national land reserves. This recent article in bioGraphic, authored by freelance reporter Dene-Hern Chen addresses the complexities of the debate surrounding just one of these national parks. The Tengis-Shishged National Park is 3,400 square mile taiga in northern Siberia. This region is also home to the Dukhas, an indigenous community of nomadic reindeer herders. As the Mongolian government has increased the number of protected areas in the country (hoping to reverse damage caused by mining and hunting), these new laws have also impacted the Dukha and have lead to disagreements between the Dukha community and park rangers. This article explores the issues at stake at Tenis-Shishged National Park and an adjacent protected wilderness area, Ulaan Taiga. The article is accompanied by a number of photographs of the region, captured by photojournalist Taylor Weidman.
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