Blackbuck Population Increased In Odisha:
A census carried out by the Odisha State Forest Department revealed that Odisha’s blackbuck population has doubled in the last six years.
- The blackbuck is known in Odisha as Krushnasara Mruga.
- Blackbucks are confined to Balukhand-Konark coastal plain/wildlife sanctuary in Puri District; Balipadar-Bhetnoi and adjacent areas in Ganjam District.
- As per the latest census, the antelopes numbered 7,358, compared to 2,194 in 2011.
- Improvement of habitats, the protection is given by the local people, and forest staff were some of the reasons for the increase in the population.
- The Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra), or the Indian Antelope, is a species of antelope native to India and Nepal.
- It is widespread in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, and other areas throughout peninsular India.
- It is considered the epitome of grassland.
- It is considered to be the fastest animal in the world next to Cheetah.
- The blackbuck is a diurnal antelope (active mainly during the day).
- It has been declared as the State Animal of Punjab, Haryana, and Andhra Pradesh.
- Cultural Importance: It is a symbol of purity for Hinduism as its skin and horns are regarded as sacred objects.
- For Buddhism, it is a symbol of good luck.
- Protection Status:
- Wildlife Protection Act 1972: Schedule I
- IUCN Status: Least Concern
- CITES: Appendix III