Barasingha – swamp deer (Rucervus duvaucelii) complete detail. Description of Barasingha – swamp deer (Rucervus duvaucelii). Classification of Barasingha – swamp deer. Habit and habitat of Barasingha – swamp deer.
Distribution of Barasingha – swamp deer. The weight of male Barasingha is between 150 to 280 kg, and weight of female is between 120 to 170 kg. They prefer tall grasslands. They are social animals.
Breeding season extends from September to April. During this season males attempt to gather harems of up to 30 females. Male will fight with other males for possession of the harem and the right to breed, and a loud ‘roaring’ call is often heard during this time, as well as a ‘hee-haw’ roar.
Barasingha is a Schedule – I animal, according to wildlife (Protection) act, 1972 and classified as Vulnerable (VU) by the IUCN.
The weight of male Barasingha is between 150 to 280 kg, and weight of female is between 120 to 170 kg. Head to body length measures about 160 to 185 cm. The length of tail about 10 to 20 cm. They are about 110 to 124 cm high at the shoulder.
Body color is generally bright orange to dense brown, fading to a lighter brown on the sides and belly, with a dirty white or white on the inside of the legs, rump, and underside of the tail. Males being slightly darker than females.
They have log hairs around its neck. Hairs are rather woolly and orangish brown above but paler below, with white spots along the spine. It coat becomes darker during the mating season.
There is a dark dorsal stripe, on each side of which may be a row of light spots. During the summer, some populations develop faint spots on the back and sides.
The head is short and strong and the ears are long and broad. Legs are strong and high. They have long and broad hooves. Underparts are white or dirty white in color.
Males have large antlers, which may grow up to 1 meter in length, and have a crown-like look with the points concentrated near the tips of the arching antler beam. They have a concentration of six to eight points near to the tips. Adult male can have 10 to 15 tines.
Common Name – Barasingha / swamp deer
Local Name – Barasingha
Zoological Name – Rucervus duvaucelii
Kingdom – Animalia
Phylum – Chordata
Class – Mammalia
Order – Cetartiodactyla
Family – Cervidae
Genus – Rucervus
Conservational Status – Schedule – I, according to wildlife (Protection) act, 1972 and classified as Vulnerable (VU) by the IUCN.
They found in central and northern India and southern Nepal. In India, they found in Himalayas, Assam, Jumna River, Ganges River, Brahmaputra River, Madhya Pradesh, Utter Pradesh, and Arunachal Pradesh.
They found in Kanha National Park, Dudhwa National Park, Manas National Park, and Kaziranga National Park.
Habit and habitat
They prefer tall grasslands and open habitats. They found in swampland and a variety of forest types ranging from dry to moist deciduous to evergreen. They also found in grassy floodplains, wooded areas, and found near water bodies.
Barasingha is a herbivorous animal. They feed on various types of grasses, aquatic plants, and leaves. They drinks atleast twice a day during the summer season.
They feed throughout the day with peaks during the mornings and late afternoons to evenings.
They are social animals, normally found in small groups of similar gender and age (5 to 20 individuals). Sometime found in large groups (up to 60).
When alarmed, they give out shrill, baying alarm calls. Breeding season extends from September to April. The age of sexual maturity is between 2 to 3 years.
Barasingha’s are polygynous. During this season males attempt to gather harems of up to 30 females. Male will fight with other males for possession of the harem and the right to breed, and a loud ‘roaring’ call is often heard during this time, as well as a ‘hee-haw’ roar. Females come into estrus once a year.
The gestation period is between 240 to 250 days. They give birth to single calves, female barasingha will wean her young between 6 to 8 months of age. Males are not involved in providing for or protecting the young. The average lifespan of Barasingha is 20 years.