Blackbuck Antilope cervicapra (Mammalia: Cetartiodactyla: Bovidae) estimates in human-dominated landscape in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India

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Mujahid Ahamad
Jamal A. Khan
Satish Kumar


Information on the status of the Indian Blackbuck Antilope cervicapra is mostly available from protected areas (PA), although 80% of its population occurs outside PAs. We conducted surveys to assess the status, age structure, sex ratio, and conservation issues of Blackbuck in and around Aligarh between February and June 2014. A median of 672 individuals at 18 separate locations were recorded with a group size ranging 4–216 except for solitary individuals. The abundance of Blackbuck was maximum in Sikandra Rao (range: 154–216) followed by Andla (range: 47–65), and Pala-Sallu (range: 53–62). Sex ratio was skewed towards females (1:4.5) with yearling to female and fawn to female ratio of 7.8:100 and 6.7:100, respectively. The percentage of adult males of Blackbuck (12.8% adult males, 8.4% sub-adult males) as well as adult females (56.4% adult females, 11.9% sub-adult females) was higher than other age classes or groups in the population. The preliminary observations indicate that the increasing population of free-ranging feral dogs, degradation of forest patches, social forestry plantations, competition with livestock, and poaching pressure are the major conservation issues of Blackbuck in the area. The current information is expected to serve as baseline in assessing the population of Blackbuck in the future. 

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