Takin Budorcas taxicolor (Hodgson, 1850)


English: Takin; French: Takin; Chinese: Jing-mao-nio-jao-ling; Nepali: Takin; Tamil: tipettiya mariman; Tibetan: Ri-ka, Ye-more.

Former distribution: As now.
Present distribution: China in Sichuan (Szechwan), Xizang (Tibet), Shaanxi (Shensi), Gansu (Kansu), Bhutan, Assam (Mishmi Hills), and northern Burma.
Behaviour: Preferred habitat: dense alpine and subalpine bamboo forest: 2400 to 4200 m near timber line in summer and lower in winter. They live in small groups in winter and up to 8 in summer. Activity diurnal. Diet consists of grasses in summer, in winter they browse on bamboo and willow shoots. Predators include snow leopards, wolves and bears.
Population status: Stable in Assam, Bhutan and Burma. Endangered in China. Estimated numbers: No records.
Brief notes:
Body weight: 250-350 kg
Head and body length: 170-220 cm
Tail length: 10-15 cm
Shoulder height: 100-130 cm
Gestation period: 9 month
Maximum age: No records
Trophy: Record SCI: 48 2/8 score, 1985 Bhutan, LEONARD MILTON. RW’s: 25″, 1902 India J.F. NEEDHAM; average 17″.
Hunting methods: Stalking.
Subspecies: 3
1. Mishmi Takin Budorcas t. taxicolor Assam, Bhutan, Burma. Stable.
2. Sichuan Takin Budorcas t. tibetana Sichuan (Szechwan) and Gansu (Kansu) border; Xizang? (Tibet). Endangered. Estimated numbers: No records.
3. Golden Takin Budorcas t. bedfordi Southern Shaanxi (Shensi). Estimated numbers: No records (a few hundreds?). Endangered. Trophy: Record RW’s: 22 3/4, 1913, British Museum, (Fenwick-Owen); average 17″.
Remarks: Takin in China have been hunted for food; the reasons for the drastic decline not yet known; protected by law in China; more information required on population status and distribution.