From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Himalayan Serow
Mains level : NA
A Himalayan Serow has been sighted for the first time in the Himalayan cold desert region.
Try this MCQ:
Q.In which one of the following State, the Rupi Bhaba Wildlife Sanctuary is located?
(a) Himachal Pradesh
- Himalayan Serow resembles a cross between a goat, a donkey, a cow, and a pig.
- They are herbivores and are typically found at altitudes between 2,000 metres and 4,000 metres (6,500 to 13,000 feet).
- They are known to be found in eastern, central, and western Himalayas, but not in the Trans Himalayan region.
- They are a medium-sized mammal with a large head, thick neck, short limbs, long, mule-like ears, and a coat of dark hair.
- There are several species of Serow s, and all of them are found in Asia.
Its’ conservation status
- According to the IUCN, Himalayan Serow s have experienced significant declines in population size, range size and habitat in the last decade, and this is expected to continue due to intensive human impact.
- Previously assessed as ‘near threatened’, the Himalayan Serow is now been categorised as ‘vulnerable’ in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
- It is listed under Schedule I of The Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, which provides absolute protection.
What is so unusual this time?
- The animal was spotted by locals and wildlife officials at a riverside rocky wall near Hurling village in Spiti, Himachal Pradesh.
- This is the first recorded human sighting of the Serow in Himachal Pradesh.
- Serow s are generally not found at this altitude, and never before has a Serow been seen in the Himalayan cold desert.
- Wildlife officials believe this particular animal may have strayed into the Spiti valley from the Rupi Bhaba Wildlife Sanctuary in adjoining Kinnaur.