Musk Deer - Kasturi Mrigha (Moschus Moschiferus)
¤ The Attraction of Musk
This animal has being paying the price for all that 'seductive musk'
with its life. The result only a few thousand (or hundred?)
deer are left in the high altitudes of the Himalayas.
Musk has a great commercial value in the international market, and
thats the reason the males are mercilessly butchered by
poachers. What is even more disturbing is the fact that the musk can
be extracted without actually killing the animal.
The musk deer is a small deer species that stands 50cm at the
shoulder. Biologically, scientists consider the musk deer to be an
intermediate species, between the deer and the antelope. It is dark
brown in colour, and the males have a pair of canines protruding from
the upper jaw a valuable asset for them as they dont have
The musk deer cannot bear hot weather and it even avoids direct
sunlight. It feeds during the wee hours of the morning or in the
evening, and relaxes hidden under the bushes during daytime. Its
an extremely shy animal and can be seen in pairs. It breeds in January
and the young one arrives in the last week of June or early July. The
litter comprises of a single calf.
¤ Best place To sight
Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary.
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