Nilgiri tahr

Nilgiri Tahr (Nilgiritragus hylocrius) or Nilgiri Ibex is a stocky goat endemic to the Nilgiri Hills and the southern portion of the Western Ghats in the states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. Nilgiri Tahr is the state animal of Tamil Nadu.

Population

The global population of Nilgiri Tahr is estimated to be between 2,000 and 2,500 individuals and shows a decreasing trend. Currently they are found in Kerala and Tamil Nadu only at high elevations on cliffs, grass-covered hills, and open terrain in the Western Ghats. Largest population of Nilgiri Tahr is found within the Eravikulam National Park, Munnar, Kerala.

Threats

IUCN has put them in endangered species. Principal threats are habitat loss due to domestic livestock and spread of invasive plants and poaching. The population of these animals is small and isolated, making them vulnerable to local extinction. The species faces competition from domestic livestock, according to the IUCN.

Distribution

Present distribution of the Nilgiri tahr is limited to approximately 5 per cent of the Western Ghats in southern India, in In the beginning of this century, the range probably extended northward at least to the Brahmagiri hills of southern Karnataka.

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