Chital also called as Spotted deer or Axis deer is the most common member of deer family that are mostly found in different parts of India , Sri Lanka ,Bangladesh and very few in Pakistan. They are generally reddish or fawn color with white spots on them and white colored underside. These are mostly seen in large herds of 30-50 females with few stags. Stags or the males have 3-pronged large lyre shaped antlers. These are very active creatures and rest during hottest part of the day. They can run up to 65 km/hr when needed. They are beautiful to watch in their natural habitat.
BODY STRUCTURE :
Chitals are large creatures and are very beautiful. Some of their physical specifications are:
They have a body length of 1 and 1.5 meters that is near to 3.25 to 5 feet.
- Their tail is near 10-25 cm that is 4-10 inches.
- Their weight is in between 70-79 kg.
- Stags got antlers that can grow up to 76 centimeters.
- Their life expectancy is 9-11 years.
FOOD HABITS :
The main food which is utilized by these animals are grass and flowers, they browse for it when needed and they get it mainly from forest trees. During monsoon fresh grass and sedge species are their important food source in sal forest. Another source of nutrition comes from mushrooms which are found abundantly in sal forests, they are good source of protein for them.
Chital are very social animals in regards of their behavior with their herds. Females, males and the fawns are all part of a herd and they posses a behavior of nomads i.e they move from one place to other in groups.
Apart from their social behavior in themselves they also show aggressive modes of their behavior. Among males head-down or scare threat, present threat, head-up, and antler threat are aggressive forms while in female biting, striking, and chasing are common aggressive modes.
They breed throughout the year which makes them different from other deer because chitals dont have any seasonal rut. They have a gestation period of 220 days after which 1 or 2 fawns are born. At birth time fawns weight is approx. 3 kg.
The fawns are nursed by mother until they reach an age of 6 months.
Following types of dear are more famous:
- Axis Deer
- Japnese Deer
- Spotted Axis Deer
- Sika Deer
They have not faced too much threat that will lead them to extinction, but still they are hunted on a large scale moreover they are also loosing their habitats to humans for agriculture or residential purpose.
Govt. is taking steps but still there are lot of people who are unaware of the fact of loosing them. If this will carry on on-such rapid rate soon spotted deer will be hard to see.
PRICE IN INDIA:
The price of chital in India starts from Rs 5000/- to Rs 15000/- depending upon the breed.