20 June 2009

Himalayan Goral [Naini Tal Zoo]

GoralHimalayan Goral (sometimes spelled "Ghoral" or "Ghooral"; Naemorhedus goral) belong to the goat-antelopes (subfamily Caprinae). Their closest relatives appear to be serow, chamois and the misnamed Rocky Mountain goat (it's not actually a true goat). This little individual (roughly the size of a domestic goat) seemed happy enough in its enclosure at Naini Tal zoo; at least happy enough to peer at me with what seemed like a degree of curiosity. Perhaps it was just wondering if and when I'd suddenly produce a tasty morsel (not something that would happen, especially since a prominent sign said bluntly, "Teasing or feeding the animals is punishable"). Zoos aren't my preferred habitat for photographing animals, but I never saw these in the wild so instead settled for photographing through the fence.
The IUCN classifies these as "Near threatened", listing the main threats as habitat destruction, hunting, and possibly competition with livestock.
[Photographed in early December 2006.]
All content © 2009 Pete McGregor

4 comments:

the watercats said...

Ahh, would you lookat.... This little fella has such a jaunty little face and dare I say it, a touch of the God Pan about him!?..

Zhoen said...

Made me laugh, so I turned the screen to D, and he laughed too.

Seems pretty happy, zoo or no.

Ely López said...

Sure, in its wild wisdom, this little guy knows for sure it is a fortune to be alive.

pohanginapete said...

Watercats, it does indeed look like Pan. I hadn't recognised the resemblance — thanks!

Zhoen, glad you and D appreciated the quizzical look :^)

Ely — and I, too, share that gratitude for being alive, and being able to enjoy it. :^)