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Equus hemionus ssp. khur 

Scope: Global
Language: English
Status_ne_offStatus_dd_offStatus_lc_offStatus_nt_onStatus_vu_offStatus_en_offStatus_cr_offStatus_ew_offStatus_ex_off

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Perissodactyla Equidae

Scientific Name: Equus hemionus ssp. khur Lesson, 1827
Parent Species:
Common Name(s):
English Indian Wild Ass, Khur
Synonym(s):
Equus khur Lesson, 1827
Taxonomic Notes: This is treated by Grubb in Wilson & Reeder (1993) as a synonym of Equus onager which in turn was treated in the 1996 Red List as a subsp. of E. hemionus.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2015-05-01
Assessor(s): Kaczensky, P., Lkhagvasuren, B., Pereladova, O., Hemami, M. & Bouskila, A.
Reviewer(s): King, S.R.B. & Moehlman, P.D.
Contributor(s): Shah, N. & Bhatnagar, Y.V.
Justification:
Equus hemionus khur is listed as Near Threatened (NT), but is close to being listed as Vulnerable (VU D2) due to occurrence in only one population in and around the Little Rann of Kutch. Despite only being found in one location, the current population size of around 2,000 mature individuals and the AOO of 16,000 km2 does not qualify the species for any of the threatened categories as it is unlikely to become CR or EX within three generations. However any change in the current situation could quickly cause the species to be listed as VU. 

An estimated 30-35% of the Khur population lives outside the protected area and human-Khur conflicts are increasing, particularly crop raiding. In recent years Khur have also been increasingly hit on the major Express highway. The International boundary with Pakistan has been fenced thus restricting any possibility of Khur movement beyond borders. Although the population has somewhat increased over the past years, foaling rates in Khur have been on the decline in recent years. The population has increased since the previous assessment, but threats from human activities mean that this subspecies is still at threat.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Eqquus hemionus khur only occurs in and around the Little Rann of Kutch.
Countries occurrence:
Native:
India
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:16000Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):No
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:32000
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):NoExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):No
Number of Locations:1Continuing decline in number of locations:No
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations:No
Upper elevation limit (metres):100
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:

Equus hemionus khur is found in the Little Rann of Kutch in India (Shah and Qureshi 2007). In 2009 the official estimate for this population was ~4,000 animals (N. Shah pers. comm. 2014), of which about 2,000 are mature.

Current Population Trend:Increasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:2000
Population severely fragmented:No
No. of subpopulations:1Continuing decline in subpopulations:No
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:NoAll individuals in one subpopulation:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The taxon is found in semi-desert, and grassland areas.
Systems:Terrestrial
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes
Generation Length (years):7.5

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Threats to Khur in the Little Rann of Kutch in India stem from increasing human activities. Land use patterns have changed since the Mega Narmada Dam Project which resulted in the Sardar Sarovar canals all around the protected area. Uninformed release of Sardar Sarovar canal excess waters into the Rann is having an impact on the micro-habitat, the short grasslands and is restricting the movement of Khur and other species across the saline desert. Increased agricultural practices have converted fallow lands into irrigation fields, resulting in shrinking habitat for the existing Khur population. Religious activities, cattle breeding and influx of people have accelerated on the Islands or Bets of the Rann.

Prosopis juliflora invasion is an additional threat to the habitat.

An estimated 30-35% of the Khur population lives outside the protected area and human-Khur conflicts are increasing, particularly crop raiding.

In recent years Khur have also been increasingly hit on the major Express highway. The International Boundary with Pakistan has been fenced thus restricting any possibility of Khur movement beyond borders. Although the population has somewhat increased over the past years, foaling rates in Khur have been on the decline in recent years.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Included in CITES Appendix I. Protected at national level, and occurs largely in a protected area.

Citation: Kaczensky, P., Lkhagvasuren, B., Pereladova, O., Hemami, M. & Bouskila, A. 2016. Equus hemionus ssp. khur. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T7963A3144616. . Downloaded on 12 December 2017.
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