Population size, herd structure and sex ratio of the Blackbuck Antilope Cervicapra (Mammalia: Cetartiodactyla: Bovidae) in a human dominated area in Odisha, India

Main Article Content

Subrat Debata


Blackbuck Antilope cervicapra in human dominated landscapes are vulnerable to poaching, habitat loss and competition with livestock for forage.  I estimated population sizes and age structure of Blackbucks in an unprotected site of 61.21km² in Odisha over a period of one year (October 2012 to October 2013).  A total of 7,134 individuals in 366 herds were documented ranging from a single individual to the largest herd of 51 animals.  Average herd size was 19.49±0.03 (SE) and ranged from 13.34±0.06 in summer to 31.86±0.07 during the monsoon.  Sex ratio was skewed towards females by 3:1.  The young constituted 16% of the population.  This indicates that a healthy population of blackbuck is surviving in this area; therefore measures need to be taken to conserve this site and manage the area as a Blackbuck reserve. 

Article Details

Author Biography

Subrat Debata, Department of Biodiversity and Conservation of Natural Resources, Central University of Orissa, Koraput, Odisha 764021, India

Department of Biodiversity and Conservation of Natural Resources, Ph.D. Scholar


Debata, S. & K.K. Swain (2017). Group size and population structure of vulnerable Gaur in an isolated tropical deciduous forest of eastern India. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, India Section B: Biological Sciences 6(26): 1–6; http://doi.org/10.1007/s40011-017-0926-0

Herlekar, I. (2014). Architect of one’s own destruction. Current Science 106(7): 917–918.

Kar, S. (2001). Balipadar’s Blackbuck (An Insight into Myth and Reality of Human Blackbuck Relationship). Wildlife wing, Forest Department, Government of Orissa Publication, Bhubaneshwar, 41pp.

Mallon, D.P. (2008). Antilope cervicapra. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T1681A6448761. Accessed on 06 December 2016. http://doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2008.RLTS.T1681A6448761.en

Menon, V. (2014). Indian Mammals - A Field Guide. Hachette Book Publishing India Pvt. Ltd, Gurgaon, India, 528pp.

Prater, S.H. (1980). The Book of Indian Animals. Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, 348pp.

Ramesh, T., K. Sankar, Q. Qureshi & R. Kalle (2012). Group size, sex and age composition of Chital (Axis axis) and Sambar (Rusa unicolor) in a deciduous habitat of Western Ghats. Mammalian Biology 77: 53–59; http://doi.org/10.1016/j.mambio.2011.09.003

Most read articles by the same author(s)