Dept. of Wild: Invade the Blackbuck Antelope’s Territory

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The blackbuck antelope is one of the most beautiful of the world’s many antelope species.

Hailing from India and Pakistan, the species was brought over in the middle of the 20th century for hunting and has flourished on ranches in the Texas Hill Country and beyond. In fact, may have been sent back to their native lands to help restore fractionalized populations there. There are more in Texas than there are in India or Pakistan today.

A growing number of blackbucks exist and are breeding outside of high-fenced operations but these wary animals can be extremely difficult to hunt. In this issue of Dept. of Wild, TF&G Editor-In-Chief Chester Moore explain a little known secret that can help you score on the elusive blackbuck.

According to the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, “The male is rich dark brown above, on the sides and on the outside of the legs, whereas the doe is yellowish fawn on the head and back. In both sexes the underparts, inside ofthe legs, and an area encircling the eyes are white. The males gradually become darker to almost black with age. The build is graceful and slender with the average male standing about 32 inches high at the shoulder and weighing around 80 pounds. The horns, borne only by the males, are 18 to 28 inches long, ringed at the base, and twisted spirally up to 5 turns. The narrow muzzle is sheep-like, the tail is short, and the hooves are delicate and sharply pointed.”

(“Department of Wild” takes a deep look at how wildlife and fish behavior and how it translates to the gear we use, the times we hunt an fish, shatters myths and misconceptions and promotes a strong appreciation of all of our natural resources. Chester Moore is Editor-In-Chief of Texas Fish and Game and has  won more than 100 awards from writing, photography, radio and conservation. He was named a “Hero of Conservation” from Field & Stream for the work he has done with southern flounder.)

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