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Hangul, the rare Kashmir deer, may soon go extinct

About Kashmir Stag

  • The Kashmir Stag or Hangul is a subspecies of elk native to India.

  • Known for its giant antlers bearing 11 to 16 points.

  • The main concentration of the endangered species is in Srinagar’s famed Dachigam national park.

  • Once found in the high altitudes of northern India and Pakistan, the animal now only lives in the dense riverine forests of Dachigam.

Reasons for massive decline in population:

  • Poaching

  • Habitat destruction

  • Because of human intrusions and domestic livestock grazing at its habitat

  • There is a full-fledged government-run sheep breeding centre inside the park that has also contributed to the dwindling hangul population.

  • The breeding centre causes bacterial infections that affect fetuses of hind resulting in a low birthrate of hangul,

  • There is also a battalion of security forces, offices of fisheries, protocol, and tourism departments inside the park.

  • Some influential people have constructed structures outside the park in complete violation of rules.

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Protection Measures

  • Listed under the Schedule-I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and J&K Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1978.

  • Listed among the top 15 species of high conservation priority by the Central Government.