In a recent census conducted at Kashmir’s Dachigam National Park, it was found that the population of Hangul or Kashmiri Stag has gradually increased over time at the national park.
About Kashmiri Stag:
- The Kashmir stag also called hangul is a subspecies of Central Asian red deer endemic to Kashmir and surrounding areas.
- It is found in dense riverine forests in the high valleys and mountains of Jammu and Kashmir and northern Himachal Pradesh.
- In Kashmir, it is found primarily in the Dachigam National Park where it receives protection.
- A small population has also been witnessed in Overa-Aru Wildlife Sanctuary in south Kashmir.
- Conservation status
- IUCN: Critically Endangered
- CITES : Appendix I
Key facts about the Dachigam National Park
- The actual beauty of the park lies in the deep valleys, rocky outcrops, steep wooded slopes and rolling alpine pastures.
- Being located in a mountainous area, Dachigam National Park faces a huge variation in altitude that ranges from 1600 m to 4200 m above sea level.
- This variation in altitude categorises Dachigam National Park into two regions- the upper region and the lower region.
- Flora: It is extremely rich in Wild Cherry, Pear, Plum, Peach, Apple, Apricot, Walnut, Chestnut, Oak, Willow, Poplar, Chinar, Birch, Pine and Elm.
- Fauna: Hangul (Kashmir Stag), Musk deer, Brown Bear, Leopards, Jungle Cats, Himalayan black bear, and a few species of wild goats like the markhor and ibex.
Q1) What is special about markhor?
The markhor is the largest of the wild goat species, with broad hooves and striking spiral horns that can grow to five feet long in mature males. These goats live in herds of 30-100 females, which are joined by males during the fall mating season.