Habitat and Ecology
Life History and Behavior
Lifespan, longevity, and ageing
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Barcode data: Gazella bennettii
There is 1 barcode sequence available from BOLD and GenBank. Below is the sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species. See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen. Other sequences that do not yet meet barcode criteria may also be available.
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Download FASTA File
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Gazella bennettii
Public Records: 1
Specimens with Barcodes: 1
Species With Barcodes: 1
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
- 2003Least Concern(IUCN 2003)
- 2003Least Concern
- 1994Vulnerable(Groombridge 1994)
Habitat and distribution
The chinkara lives in arid plains and hills, deserts, dry scrub and light forests in India, Pakistan and Iran. Occurrence and status in Afghanistan are unclear. Most of its range lies in India. In Iran, it occurs patchily as far as Kavir National Park near Tehran. It is known to range up to elevations 1500 metres high in Pakistan.
It stands at 65 cm tall and weighs about 23 kg. It has a summer coat, which is a reddish-buff colour, with smooth, glossy fur. In winter, the white belly and throat fur is in greater contrast. The sides of the face have dark chestnut stripes from the corner of the eye to the muzzle, bordered by white stripes. Its horns reach over 39 cm.
It is a shy animal and avoids human habitation. It can go without water for long periods and can get sufficient fluids from plants and dew. Although most are seen alone, they can sometimes be spotted in groups of up to four animals.
Relationships and hunting
They mate once a year and males compete for access to females. The chinkara has characteristics shared with other gazelles. The population was estimated at 100,000 with 80,000 in the Thar Desert, India in 2001. Numbers in Pakistan have been severely reduced by hunting, and in Iran it is now confined to protected areas. In India, numbers are probably declining slowly, but it is not threatened. Its global status on the IUCN Red List is still considered Least Concern (the lowest threat category). It occurs in more than 80 protected areas in India, and several in Iran.
It is preyed upon by leopards, Bengal tigers, and dholes. The Chinkara was a common prey item of the Asiatic cheetah in India alongside blackbucks. Outside protected areas they may be attacked by pariah dogs, and both wolves and golden jackals are also known to hunt them.
- Prater, S. H. 1971 The Book of Indian Animals. Oxford University Press, 2005 reprint.
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