Conference Paper

A study on Ecobiology of Gray Goral (Naemorhedus goral) with reference to Pakistan and Azad Kashmir

Authors:
  • Bioresource Research Centre
  • Bioresource Research Centre
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Abstract

Background/Question/Methods The Himalayan grey goral, Naemorhedus goral bedfordi (Artiodactyla: Bovidae) is listed as “lower risk: near threatened” on the IUCN Red List, but was last assessed in 1996. Between 2002 04, we conducted surveys of goral distribution and population structure in the western limit of its range, in northern Pakistan and Kashmir (Northern Areas and Azad Kashmir). Since the 1996 assessment, human and livestock populations have grown in the region, potentially impacting grey goral populations. Results/Conclusions At least 99 species of endospermic plants, distributed with a low constancy of appearance with three well defined vegetation layers in its habitat. The population suggests that the species is distributed over some 4,839 km2 of the potential area with an overall density of 0.15±0.02 heads/km2 The male: female sex ratio (1:1.92) suggests the preponderance of the females. There are on the average 0.31 sub-adult per adult female. The mean herd size is 1.72± 0.11. The goral population is present at altitude of 800-2,200 m asl during winter, and tends to move to 1400-2600 m asl. during summer. Goral consumes a minimum of 28 plant species; herb, shrub, and trees appearing in the ratio of 1:36:63. The food plants provide 77.85±2.56% water, 8.55±0.38% ash, 6.77±0.06% carbohydrates, 5.5%±0.25% protein and 1.28±0.08% fats. The food provides 4.440 kcal of energy and 5.45 l of water per day to the adult goral. The behavioural studies suggest that the sub-adult spends 33.48%, 12.22%, 20.24%, 22.16% and 7.92% of time while sleeping, ruminating, resting, feeding and agnostic activities, respectively. The adults spend 24.88%, 26.48%, 14.09%, 8.06% and 13.42% of the time on such activities. The analysis of the species biology suggests that it has a vulnerable status, having a fragmented population of less than 1,000 individuals. The future management would require protection to fawns in the protected areas, creation of habitat corridors, international cooperation to provide support to the population surviving in Indian part of the distribution range of the species, habitat management and arousing public cooperation through awareness campaign.

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