Blackbucks Population in Odisha

News: Odisha’s blackbuck population has doubled in the last six years, according to figures from the latest population census.

Reasons for their rise

  • Improvement of habitats, the protection given by the local people and forest staff were some of the reasons for the increase of the population. The people of Ganjam had been enthusiastically protecting the animal like the Bishnois of western Rajasthan and the Vala Rajputs of Saurashtra.

About Blackbuck:

  • The Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra), or the Indian Antelope, is a species of antelope native to India and Nepal. It is widespread in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, and other areas throughout peninsular India.
  • It is considered as the epitome of grassland. It is considered to be the fastest animal in the world next to Cheetah. The blackbuck is a diurnal antelope (active mainly during the day). It has been declared as the State Animal of Punjab, Haryana, and Andhra Pradesh.
  • It is a symbol of purity for Hinduism as its skin and horns are regarded as a sacred object. For Buddhism, it is a symbol of good luck.

Protection Status:

  • Wildlife Protection Act 1972: Schedule I
  • IUCN Status: Least Concern
  • CITES: Appendix III