Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Creature Feature #103: Chital
The Chital, or Axis Deer, is found in India and surrounding countries, where he is common in wooded regions. He has also been introduced to other countries, including Australia and Hawaii. He prefers his shade, and avoids direct sunlight. Herds number from ten to fifty individuals with a mix of both male and female. The males whose antlers are without velvet (hard) are dominant over the others and when the hinds come into oestrus, the stag will follow her constantly, not even eating. Whilst mostly silent when grazing, Chital will "chuckle" to one another as they travel through their dense woodland home. If danger threatens, an alarm call is barked and the herd will run in a group for a quick burst, before diving into the shelter of thick bush. They also frequently forage near langur monkey troops, with both taking advantage of the other species' senses to alert them to danger.