Status of Golden Jackal Canis aureus and ungulates in a small enclosed area- Van Vihar National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India

Main Article Content

S. Prerna
Advait Edgaonkar
Yogesh Dubey


We estimated densities of Golden Jackals and five ungulate species in Van Vihar National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India.  It is an enclosed area of about 4.45km², out of which 3.5km² is available for free ranging animals.  Twenty-six transects with a combined length of 22.6km and an effort of 50.2km were walked.  A total of 1079 animal detections belonging to six different species were made.  The density of jackals was (17±3.8SE)/km2. Among the ungulates, chital had the highest density (118±18.8SE)/km2 followed by Sambar (34.1±6.9 SE)/km2, Nilgai (13.1±2.8SE)/km2, Blackbuck (6.6±1.5 SE)/km2 and Wild Pig (3.7±0.8 SE)/km2.  The ungulate biomass was found to be (12979.2±2463.26 SE)kg/km2.  Chital biomass was the highest at (5574.2±886.58 SE)kg/km2, followed by Sambar biomass of (4569.4±913.75 SE)kg/km2, Nilgai (2358±523.24 SE)kg/km2, Blackbuck (211.2±66.18 SE)kg/km2 and Wild Pig (118.4±28.37 SE)kg/km2.  The sex ratio was calculated and most ungulates had female-biased adult sex ratio.


Article Details

Author Biographies

S. Prerna, Wildlife Institute of India, Chandrabani, Dehradun, Uttarakhand 248001, India

S. Prerna is a researcher at Wildlife Institute of India.  Prerna has worked in All India tiger monitoring project 2013-15 and  has worked for 5 years on captive bear rehabilitation. This work was for her MPhil thesis at IIFM, Bhopal. Apart from carnivore ecology, Prerna is interested in animal behavior and conservation.


Advait Edgaonkar, Indian Institute of Forest Management, Nehru Nagar, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh 462003, India

Advait Edgaonkar is an Assistant Professor at Indian Institute of Forest Management, Bhopal. He has a PhD in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation. He is interested in carnivore ecology and is presently estimating the population of domestic dogs in Bhopal city. 


Yogesh Dubey, Indian Institute of Forest Management, Nehru Nagar, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh 462003, India

Yogesh Dubey is an Associate Professor at IIFM,Bhopal. He has a PhD in wildlife science. He is interested in biodiversity impact assessment studies and Protected area management.



Biswas, S. & K. Sankar (2002). Prey abundance and food habit of tigers (Panthera tigris tigris) in Pench National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India. Journal of Zoology 256(3): 411–420;

Buckland, S.T., D.R. Anderson, K.P. Burnham & J.L. Laake (1993). Distance Sampling: Estimating Abundance of Biological Populations. Chapman and Hall, London, 446pp.

Buckland, S.T., D.R. Anderson, K.P. Burnham, J.L. Laake, D.L. Borchers & L. Thomas (2001). Introduction to Distance Sampling: Estimating Abundance of Biological Populations. Oxford University Press, Oxford;

Burnham K.P. & D.R. Anderson (2003). Model selection and multi model inference, a practical information-theoretic approach. New York: Springer.

Burnham, K.P., D.R. Anderson & J.L. Laake (1980). Estimation of density from line transects sampling of biological populations. Wildlife Monographs 72: 1-202.

Edgaonkar, A. (2008). Ecology of the Leopard Panthera pardus in Bori Widllife Sanctuary and Satpura National Park, India. PhD Thesis. University of Florida, 135pp.

Eisenberg, J.F. & J. Seidensticker (1976). Ungulates in southern Asia: a consideration of biomass estimates for selected habitats. Biological Conservation 10: 293–308.

Gopal, R., Q. Qureshi, M. Bharadwaj, R.K.J. Singh & Y.V. Jhala (2010). Evaluating the status of the endangered Tiger Panthera tigris and its prey in Panna Tiger Reserve, Madhya Pradesh, India. Oryx 44: 383–398;

Jhala, Y.V. & P.D. Moehlman (2008). Canis aureus. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. . Downloaded on 20 January 2014.

Karanth, K.U. & M.E. Sunquist (1992). Population structure, density and biomass of large herbivores in the tropical forests of Nagarahole, India. Journal of Tropical Ecology 8: 21;

Karanth, K.U. & J.D. Nichols (2000). Ecological Status and Conservation of Tigers in India: Final Technical Report submitted to US Fish and Wildlife Service, Washington DC, and Wildlife Conservation Society, New York. Centre for Wildlife Studies, Bangalore, Bangalore.

Karanth, K.U., N.S. Kumar & J.D. Nichols (2002). Field surveys: estimating absolute densities of tigers using capture-recapture sampling, pp. 139­–152. In: Karanth, K.U. & J.D. Nichols (eds.). Monitoring Tigers and Their Prey: A Manual for Researchers, Managers and Conservationists in Tropical Asia. Centre for Wildlife Studies, Bangalore, India.

Leslie, Jr., D.M. (2011). Nilgai (Bos elaphu stragocamelus), pp. 591–592 in: Wilson, D.E. & R.A. Mittermeier (eds.). Handbook of the Mammals of the World - Volume 2 - Hoofed Mammals. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.

Mungall, E.C. (1991). Establishment of lying out: an example for Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra). Applied Animal Behaviour Science 29(1): 15­–37;

Pariwakam, M.P. (2006). Estimation of abundance and fawn survival in Chital (Axis axis) populations using photographic capture-recapture sampling. MSc Thesis. The Manipal Academy of Higher Education.

Patil, V.K. & Y.V. Jhala (2008). Movement Patterens and habitat use of Golden Jackal Canis aureus in Bhal regions of Gujarat. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 105(2): 209–211.

Prerna, S. (2013). Population Estimation, Feeding Ecology and Management Strategies for Golden Jackals (Canis aureus) in Van Vihar National Park Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh India. MPhil Dissertation. IIFM, Saurashtra University, Gujarat.

Raman, T.R.S. (1996). Factors influencing seasonal and monthly changes in the group size of Chital or Axis Deer in southern India. Journal of Biosciences 22: 203–218.

Raman, Τ.R.S., R.K.G. Menon & R. Sukumar (1995). Ecology and management of Chital and Blackbuck in Guindy National Park, Madras. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 93: 178–192

Sankar, K. & S.P. Goyal (eds.) (2004). Ungulates of India – Vol. 7, No. 1. ENVIS Bulletin: Wildlife and Protected Areas. Wildlife Institute of India, Deheradun, India, 448pp.

Sankar, K. & B. Acharya (2004). Spotted Deer or Chital (Axis axis Erxleben), pp. 171–180. In: Sankar, K. & S.P. Goyal (eds.) Ungulates of India. ENVIS Bulletin: Wildlife and Protected Areas, Vol. 7, No. 1. Wildlife Institute of India, Deheradun, India, 448pp.

Schaller, G.B. (1967). The Deer and the Tiger. University of Chicago Press. Chicago.

Sharma, I.K. (1998). Habitat preferences, feeding behaviour, adaptations and conservation of the Asiatic Jackal (Canis aureus) in the Indian Thar Desert. Tiger Paper 25: 11–12.

Skalski, J.R., K.E. Ryding & J.J. Millspaugh (2005). “Estimating Population Sex Ratios.â€Â Wildlife Demography: Analysis of Sex, Age, and Count Data. Elsevier Academic, Burlington, MA, pp. 59–62.

Thomas, L., S.T. Buckland, E.A. Rexstad, J.L. Laake, S. Strindberg, S.L. Hedley, J.R.B. Bishop & T.A. Marques (2010). Distance software: design and analysis of distance sampling surveys for estimating population size. Journal of Applied Ecology 47: 5–14. Available at

Van Vihar National Park (2011). accessed 27 January 2015

Wegge, P., M. Odden, C.P. Pokharel & T. Storaas (2009). Predator-prey relationships and responses of ungulates and their predators to the establishment of protected areas: A case study of tigers, leopards and their prey in Bardia National Park, Nepal. Biological Conservation 142(1): 189–202;

Yoccuz, N.G., J.D. Nichols & T. Boulinier (2001). Monitoring of biological diversity in space and time. Trends Ecology and Evolution 16: 446–453;