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Monday, July 25, 2016

black buck and Chinkara ~ deer become frozen before headlight and kill themselves !!!

At Antigua recreation ground, Indians played in 1983, 1997, 2002 and 2006 all ending in draws.  However, at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Antigua, India won by a huge margin of an innings and 92 runs, making it their biggest victory margin abroad.  Ravi Ashwin’s 7/83  is  the best by an Indian bowler in West Indies.  Ash joins the elite list of Jack Gregory and Ian Botham [century and 7 wickets in an innings].  Sometime back, the  Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association (MPCA) dropped all-rounder Rameez Khan from the Ranji trophy squad after he was arrested for allegedly killing a black buck in Sagar district.   For the  Ranji Trophy quarter final match against West Bengal, they left out Rameez as Rameez, his father Mehmood Khan and their two other associates were arrested under Wild Life Protection Act in Sagar district for allegedly killing a black buck.

Deer -  blackbuck and Chinkara !  

Blackbuck and chinkara may look similar, but they are actually of entirely different. 

Blackbuck are a type of antelope, whereas chinkara are a type of gazelle.   The most prominent difference between antelopes and deer is that male deer have antlers which they shed and grow every year while antelopes have horns that are permanent. Another difference is that deer antlers are branched and antelope horns are not. Antelopes belong to family Bovidae (as do sheep, goat and cattle), while deer belong to family Cervidae.

The chinkara, also known as the Indian gazelle, is a gazelle species native to Iran, Pakistan and India.  It stands at 65 cm (26 in) tall and weighs about 23 kg (51 lb). The sides of the face have dark chestnut stripes from the corner of the eye to the muzzle, bordered by white stripes.  Chinkara live in arid plains and hills, deserts, dry scrub and light forests. They inhabit more than 80 protected areas in India. In 2001, the Indian chinkara population was estimated at 100,000 with 80,000 living in the Thar Desert. The population in Pakistan is scattered, and has been severely reduced by hunting. Also in Iran, the population is fragmented. In Afghanistan, chinkaras are probably very rare.

Chinkaras are shy and avoid human habitation. They can go without water for long periods and can get sufficient fluids from plants and dew. Although most are seen alone, they can sometimes be spotted in groups of up to four animals. They share their habitat with several other herbivores, such as nilgai, blackbuck, chausingha, wild goats, and wild pigs. Chinkaras are preyed upon by leopards, Bengal tigers, and dholes.

The blackbuck  also known as the Indian antelope, is an antelope found in India. The long, ringed horns, 35–75 centimetres  long, are generally present only on males.  The blackbuck is a diurnal antelope (active mainly during the day). The blackbuck inhabits grassy plains and slightly forested areas. Due to their regular need of water, they prefer areas where water is perennially available. The antelope is native to and found mainly in India, while it is extinct in Bangladesh. Formerly widespread, only small, scattered herds are seen today, largely confined to protected areas. During the 20th century, blackbuck numbers declined sharply due to excessive hunting, deforestation and habitat degradation. During the 20th century, blackbuck numbers declined sharply due to excessive hunting, deforestation and habitat degradation. Until India's independence in 1947, blackbuck and chinkara were hunted in many princely states with specially trained captive Asiatic cheetahs.

Deer have a peculiar problem ! Unlike human pupils, which are round and when dilated do not span much of the eye, deer pupils are elliptical (like a cat’s) and can dilate to cover the entire width of the orb.  Since deer  have  larger  pupils, more dilated, more amount of light reaching  the retina due to their larger lens,  they often become dazed when faced with powerful headlights of vehicle, causing them to freeze and eventually die too.

Today web searches on ‘chinkara or blackbuck’ leads to the news of Salman Khan being acquitted from cases of killing a black buck and chinkara in two separate incidents. This phase seems to be a good one for Salman, apart from his box office success with Sultan. In December 2015, Salman Khan was acquitted in the 2002 hit-and-run case as well. Khan's father Salim Khan tweeted moments after the verdict.
To read something good – there was the story of young Kiran Bishnoi of Jodhpur, who rescued and raised a chinkara fawn, becoming a poster girl in many magazines.  Kiran Bishnoi, a young Rajasthani woman, saved a chinkara fawn from a pack of dogs which had surrounded the little animal. What followed thereafter is an even more moving story  -like many other women of  Rajasthan, she had walked up to some two kilometres when she saw this chinkara baby being attacked by dogs. She saved animal but could not carry the load and deer together.   She threw away the wood collected for her livelihood and at home, as bottle feeding failed, she  breast-fed the young fawn along with her child.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
25th July 2016.


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