name = Blackbuck
status = NT
status_system = IUCN3.1
status_ref = [IUCN2006 | assessors=Mallon, D.P. (Antelope Specialist Group) | year=2003 | id=1681 | title=Antilope cervicapra | downloaded=2008-08-13]
trend = stable

image_width = 200px
regnum = Animalia
phylum = Chordata
classis = Mammalia
ordo = Artiodactyla
familia = Bovidae
subfamilia = Antilopinae
genus = "Antilope"
genus_authority = Pallas, 1766
species = "A. cervicapra"
binomial = "Antilope cervicapra"
binomial_authority = (Linnaeus, 1758)
subdivision_ranks = Subspecies
subdivision = "Antilope cervicapra centralis
Antilope cervicapra cervicapra
Antilope cervicapra rajputanae
Antilope cervicapra rupicapra"

Blackbuck ("Antilope cervicapra") is a species of antelope found mainly in India, but also in parts of Pakistan and Nepal. There are also introduced populations in various parts of the world including numerous ranches in Texas in the United States of America; free-ranging populations also exist in Argentina (pampas in southern Buenos Aires, Santa Fe and Entre Ríos provinces).

Local names for the species include "Kala hiran", "Sasin", "Iralai Maan", "Krishna Jinka", "Krishna Mriga" in Kannada and "Kalveet" in Marathi. It is often simply called "Indian antelope" though this term might also be used for other Antilopinae from the region.


The horns of the Blackbuck are ringed with 1 to 4 turns, rarely more than 4 turns, and can be as long as 28 inches. A trophy Blackbuck is 18+ inches. In the male, the upper body is black (dark brown), and the belly and eye rings are white. The light-brown female is usually hornless. Blackbucks usually roam the plains in herds of 15 to 20 animals with one dominant male.

There are four subspecies or geographic races
* "Antilope cervicapra cervicapra"
* "Antilope cervicapra rajputanae"
* "Antilope cervicapra centralis"
* "Antilope cervicapra rupicapra"

Native habitat

Originally spread over large tracts of India (except in North East India). Today the Blackbuck population is confined to areas in Orissa,Punjab, Rajasthan, [Haryana] ,Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka with a few small pockets in Central India. Its original habitat is open plain and not dense jungles. On the open plain, the Blackbuck is one of the fastest animals and can outrun most predators over long distances. Its chief predator was the now extinct Indian Cheetah. It is now sometimes preyed upon by wolves, feral dogs, etc.

The diet of the Blackbuck consists mostly of grasses, although it does eat pods, flowers and fruits to supplement its diet. The maximum life span recorded is 16 years and the average is 12 years.


The main threats to the species are
*Habitat destruction

The Blackbuck is hunted for its flesh and its skin. Although Indian law strictly prohibits the hunting of these endangered animals, there are still occasional incidents of poaching. The remaining populations are under threat from inbreeding. The natural habitat of the Blackbuck is being encroached upon by man's need for arable land and grazing ground for domesticated cattle. Exposure to domesticated cattle also renders the Blackbuck exposed to bovine diseases. Once large herds freely roamed in the plains of North India, where they thrive best, but no longer. During the eighteenth, nineteenth and the first half of the twentieth centuries, Blackbuck was the most hunted wild animal all over India. Until India's independence, many princely states used to hunt this antelope and the other local Indian gazelle, the Chinkara with specially trained pet Asiatic Cheetah. With their habitat of vast grasslands converted into farmlands due to human population explosion the Asiatic Cheetahs are now sadly extinct in India since its independence and in most of Asia, the very last few fight for survival in Iran. Fortunately the population is still stable with 50,000 native individuals, with an additional 43,000 introduced individuals to Texas and Argentina, the species could be seen in zoos.



According to the Hindu mythology Blackbuck or "Krishna Jinka" is considered as the vehicle (vahana) of the Moon-god or "Chandrama".


The blackbuck, known as Krishna Jinka in Telugu language, has been declared the state animal of Andhra Pradesh.As per Garuda Purana of Hindu Mythology, Krishna Jinka bestows prosperity in the areas where they live.

Like most wild animals, the Blackbuck is in principle protected in India by the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972. Its protected status has gained publicity through a widely reported court case in which one of India's leading film stars, Mr. Salman Khan, was sentenced to five years imprisonment for killing two black bucks and several endangered chinkaras. The arrest was prompted by intense protests from the Bishnoi ethnic group, which holds animals and trees sacred, and on whose land the hunting had taken place.

In the past hunting of Blackbuck with the help of trained Asiatic Cheetahs was a sport much enjoyed by the Indian Royalty.

Several species of Indian deer and antelope were brought to the United States, specifically Texas, during the early part of the 20th century for the purpose of hunting and breeding. Some of these included Blackbuck, Axis Deer, or Chital Deer as they are called in India, Barasingha, and Nilgai. These species, plus many others, can now be found on private hunting ranches and freely roaming the Hill Country and surroundings areas in Texas. Game ranch raised blackbucks are so thriving and plentiful that specimens were shipped from Texas to India in order to repopulate certain areas. In 2007, a blackbuck hunt in U.S.A. for a male trophy ranged in price from $750 - $2,500 USD depending on quality and outfitter.


* Abohar wildlife sanctuary
* Bandhavgarh National Park
* Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
* Blackbuck National Park, Velavadar
* Chhapar, Churu, Black Buck Santuary
* Corbett National Park
* Gir National Park
* Guindy National Park
* Kanha National Park
* Kirthar National Park (Pakistan)
* Lal Sohanra National parks (Pakistan)
* Maidenahalli Blackbuck Reserve, Tumakuru District, Karnataka
* Pilikula Biological Park, Mangalore, Karnataka
* Ranthambhore National Park
* Rehakuri Sanctuary, Ahmednagar District, Maharashtra
* KrushnaMruga Abhayaranya,Ranebennur,Karnataka


* SS-8 Sasin, the NATO reporting name for the R-9 Desna intercontinental ballistic missile.


* Link:
* Link:

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • blackbuck — [blak′buk΄] n. a long horned Indian antelope (Antilope cervicapra), brownish black above and white below …   English World dictionary

  • blackbuck — /blak buk /, n. a blackish brown antelope, Antilope cervicapra, of India. Also, black buck. [1885 90] * * * ▪ mammal       an antelope (family Bovidae (bovid)) indigenous to the plains of India. The blackbuck is an antelope of the same tribe… …   Universalium

  • blackbuck — /ˈblækˌbʌk/ (say blak.buk) noun (plural blackbucks, blackbuck) a common antelope of India, Antilope cervicapra, of medium size and blackish brown colour, with spiral horns; Indian antelope. Also, black buck …   Australian English dictionary

  • blackbuck — elniaožė gazelė statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas taksono rangas rūšis atitikmenys: lot. Antilope cervicapra angl. blackbuck; Indian antelope vok. Hirschziegenantilope rus. винторогая антилопа; гарна pranc. antilope cervicapre ryšiai:… …   Žinduolių pavadinimų žodynas

  • blackbuck — noun Date: 1850 an antelope (Antilope cervicapra) native to India and adjacent regions in which the male has spirally twisted horns and a chiefly dark brown coat and the female a chiefly yellowish fawn coat …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • blackbuck — noun An Indian antelope, Antilope cervicapra …   Wiktionary

  • blackbuck — n. blackish brown antelope with long horns native to India …   English contemporary dictionary

  • blackbuck — noun a small Indian gazelle, the horned male of which has a black back and white underbelly, the female being hornless. [Antilope cervicapra.] …   English new terms dictionary

  • blackbuck — n. a small Indian gazelle, Antilope cervicapra, with a black back and white underbelly. Also called SASIN …   Useful english dictionary

  • Blackbuck (disambiguation) — Blackbuck can refer to: * Blackbuck, a mammal. * Operation Black Buck, bombing raids during the Falklands War. * Black Buck, a racist epithet for African American men …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.