Species / International Ovis

Himalayan Tahr

Hemitragus jemlahicus


A narrow strip along the southern flanks of the Himalayas from about Banihal Pass in the Pir Panjal Range of northern India eastward to Bhutan. It penetrates the main Himalayan Range only in some of the large gorges.


This goat’s shoulder height is 36-40 inches and weighs about 180-200 pounds, sometimes more. A medium-sized, powerfully built animal with a full coat of hair and a shaggy mane around the neck and shoulders and extending to the knees. The overall color varies, but in most cases is a dark reddish-brown with a yellowish mane and a dark, sometimes indistinct, dorsal stripe. The face is always dark brown. The horns (both sexes) are short, stout, laterally compressed, keeled in front and curved backward to a tapered point.


A combination of big cliffs, rocks and forest.


Gregarious, in large herds, with adult males forming separate herds during the summer. Prefers to live on steep slopes that are more or less timbered. The tahr has remarkable climbing ability on the steepest cliffs. Does not like snow, keeping below it to as low as 5,000 feet, then following it up as it melts. Active morning and evening, resting midday. Feeds on grasses and foliage. Wary and difficult to approach. Eyesight very good, hearing and sense of smell not known.

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