HIMALAYAN SEROW/Behaviour, Distribution, Habitat, Size, Weight, IUCN stetus



DESCRIPTION: An appearance of a goat with long and a habit of standing with forelegs astraddle, make the Serow an ungainly goat– antelope. Its coarse coat varies from black to red. . Earlier it was believed that there were two subspecies of the Serow in India: the Himalayan race that is greyish black and the Burmese race that is chestnut-brown. However, it is now believed that the red Serow of the Garo, Naga and Mishmi Hills is more closely related to the Himalayan one than the Burmese species. In the typical form, both sexes have a coarse dark, sometimes salt-and-pepper mane and a dark dorsal stripe that is more evident insome individuals than others. The ears are ovate shaped like a donkey, with creamy white hairs inside. The tail is dark. The rump, forearm and gaskin are rufous and the shanks are creamy white below the hocks. The hooves are black. Relatively short, conical, wrinkled horns are thicker in the male and thicker at the base in older animals. It has a prominent preorbital gland on the face, another difference from the Goral. In contrast, the red form has a lighter cream chin, throat and belly, but the rest of the body, including the legs, the mane and the rump, is a uniform rufous colour. While the red form is well documented in the lower north–eastern states, the Serow of eastern Arunachal Pradesh requires more taxonomic work. In Namdapha two forms have been photographed, one the clearly red form of the southern states and the other an intermediate brown with dirty white stockings.
BEHAVIOUR: When alarmed, the Serow bounds away with what has been variously described as a hissing snort or a whistling scream.
DISTRIBUTION: The dark form in the southern slope of the Himalayas from Jammu & Kashmir in the west to Arunachal Pradesh in the east; the enigmatic red form in the hills of Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura and Nagaland.
HABITAT: Thickly forested gorges, broadleaved valleys, and subalpine scrub with dense cover and boulder-strewn hills.

Size: 100–170 cm

Wt: 85–140

IUCN Status: Near Threatened


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