Bihar plans to sterilise, not cull, nilgais
- The Bihar government will not cull the Blue Bull, locally known as the nilgai or ghurparas, anymore.
- It will, instead, sterilise them to control their increasing population in the state.
About Blue Bull(nilgai)
- Scientific Name: Boselaphus tragocamelus .
- It is the largest Asian antelope (family Bovidae).
- The nilgai is indigenous to the Indian subcontinent, and Hindus accord it the same sacred status as cattle (both belong to the subfamily Bovinae).
- Description: Nilgai is the Hindustani word for “blue cow,” which describes the blue-grey of adult bulls.
- It has a long neck with a short upright mane, a bony narrow head, a barrel-like chest, strong legs, and high withers sloping back to the croup.
- Habitat: It lives in a lightly wooded forest, wooded grassland, scrub areas and agricultural areas and human settlements. Blue Bull usually avoids dense Forests
- Social Behaviour: It is a diurnal and social animal. Generally, they are found in small herds of 4 to 20 individuals but can form large groups of 20 to 100 individuals.
- However, the adult male is also seen alone wandering widely at old ages.
- Distribution: It is found in Nepal, India and Pakistan
- Threats: It is seldom killed or injured in retaliation in response to crop-raiding.
- The major threat to this species is habitat loss and degradation due to human encroachment, clearing of forest for agriculture and over-grazing of livestock in their habitats.
Conservation Status :
- The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species listed it as Least Concern.
- It enjoys legal protection by virtue of the species having been included in Schedule-III of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.