Conservation

Sambar tales

Print edition : October 17, 2014

A stag in rut. An interesting behaviour shown by rutting stags are stamping in wet areas and wallowing in mud. Photo: Aditya Singh

A doe in oestrous and a rutting stag, Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan. Photo: Aditya Singh

A doe and its suckling fawn. Usually, one fawn is born after an eight-month gestation period and twinning is rare. Photo: Manoj Nair

A stag that had just come out of a wallow, Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan. Photo: Manoj Nair

A tiger advancing towards a sambar, not in the picture, in Ranthambhore. Photo: Gobind Bhardwaj

A tiger chasing a sambar doe in Ranthambhore. Photo: Gobind Bhardwaj

A tiger with its kill, a sambar fawn, in Ranthambhore. Photo: Gobind Bhardwaj

A camera trap picture of a tiger chasing a sambar doe in the Corbett National Park in Uttarakhand. Photo: Bivash Pandav

A magnificent sambar stag in the Periyar Tiger Reserve in Kerala. Photo: Balan Madhavan

A sambar doe in Korakundha Organic Tea Estate, Nilgiris, Tamil Nadu, during the rut season. The sore patch of the Bandipur sambar is missing here. Photo: A.J.T. Johnsingh

A doe and a stag in the Bandipur Tiger Reserve in Karnataka. Coinciding with rut, a sore patch develops on the ventral surface of the neck of both sexes of the sambar found here. Photo: Kalyan Varma

A group of sambar in the Bandipur Tiger Reserve. Photo: A.J.T. Johnsingh

This deer habitat in Chilla Range, Rajaji National Park, Uttarakhand, seems to be degraded. Photo: A.J.T. Johnsingh

Speeding vehicles have killed hundreds of sambar over the decades. Photo: Bivash Pandav

An ensnared sambar fawn. Photo: A.J.T. Johnsingh

If it is true that the sambar population in India is declining because of habitat degradation and increased poaching, it is bad news for the country’s conservation efforts in general.
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