Chinkara, Indian Gazelle (Gazella bennettii) - Wiki
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[Photo] Chinkara, Indian Gazelle, Gir forest, Gujarat, India. Photographed by S. Shankar
The Chinkara is a species of gazelles found in South Asia. Found in grasslands and desert areas in India, parts of Iran and Pakistan,& Bangladesh.
It is also known as the Indian Gazelle Gazella gazella bennetti
This gazelle stands at 65 centimetres and weighs about 23 kilograms. Its summer coat a warm biscuit, or reddish-buff colour, with smooth, glossy fur. In winter the white belly and throat fur is in greater contrast. The sides of the face have dark chestnut stripes from the corner of the eye to the muzzle bordered by white stripes. The record horns reach over 39 centimetres.
It is a shy animal and avoids human habitation.They have a special characteristic which helps them survive trying times. They can go without water for long periods and can even get sufficient fluids from plants and dew drops. Although mostly seen as solitary animals, they can sometimes be spotted in small groups numbering up to 3 - 4 individuals.
Certain researchers consider the decline in the Chinkara population as the reason behind the extinction of the Asiatic Cheetah in India. It is classified as extremely vulnerable and endowed in the highly endangered species list. Its population is on the decline due to it being hunted for game. Recently, Indian film star Salman Khan was sentenced to a 5 year rigorous imprisonment for shooting several chinkaras and blackbucks, after protests by the Bishnoi community. Encouraged by Mr. Khan's sentence for similar offences by the Jodhpur court, Rajasthan, the Gir Nature Youth Club, Gujarat, a voluntary organisation dedicated to wildlife protection and environment, sought details of the "Chinkara" case against the actor under the Right to Information Act as he has been alleged to have hunted Chinkara in the Indian State of Gujarat, too.
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