Sunday, February 9, 2014

Wild Ass at Saurashtra's Forest

In Gujarati Donkey is called as " GedhadO" and among in Tamil nadu's Sourashtrians the same word pronounciated as " Ghedad ". We can also find Surname  as " Ghedad " Or " GhedaNNu" of some families of Tamil Nadu's Sourashtrians. Mostly they belongs to Jamadagni / Jabali Gothra.

Two subspecies of the Asiatic Wild Ass are found in India - the Indian Wild Ass (E.h. khur) and the Tibetan Wild Ass (E.h. kiang), found in the Himalayan deserts of Ladakh. In peninsular India the Indian Wild Ass represents the horse family. The general colour of its hide varies from reddish grey to fawn or pale chestnut. It has an erect dark chocolate-brown mane on its neck, which extends along the spine to the root of the tail as a thin stripe; the lower parts are white. The height at the shoulders is 3ft 8in - 4ft (110-120cm) and full-grown adults tip the scales at 250-290kg. The males are slightly superior in size and darker of colour than the females though this difference is not easily distinguishable.

The Wild Ass relies on its speed and keen sight for survival. An ass at full gallop can reach speeds up to 50 km an hour; average speeds can be 30-35 km an hour. They live in herds of up to 30-40 members, sometimes reaching 100, under the leadership of an alpha male who guides the movement of the herd.

Today the Indian Wild Ass is confined to the scorching Saurashtra's deserts of the Little Rann of Kutch. It enjoys protection in the Wild Ass Wildlife Sanctuary in the Saurashtra's Little Rann, under the Indian Wildlife Act of 1972. Once the khur galloped across the open sandy deserts of Kutch but habitat destruction and poaching drove this fascinating creature to islands, locally known as bets, in the temporary marshes of the Rann.