Wildlife Conservation Efforts

Species in news: Himalayan Serow


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

(b) Manipur

(c) Meghalaya

(d) Uttarakhand

Himalayan Serow

  • 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 ‘vulnerablein 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.

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