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Mammalia > Artiodactyla > Cervidae > Rucervus

Rucervus duvaucelii G. Cuvier, 1823 – Swamp Deer

Taxonomic Notes:

There are three recognised subspecies: R. d. branderi (also known as Hardground Barasingha) found in Madhya Pradesh (Kanha), and R. d. duvaucelii found in Uttar Pradesh, southern Nepal, Kaziranga and R. d. ranjitsinhi occurs in Assam.

This species is listed as Vulnerable in the IUCN Red List of Threatened species (

Indian and global distribution:
records (based on images):
Sexual, seasonal & individual variation:
Status, Habitat and Habits:

Barasingha or Swamp Deer has fairly patchy distribution. Central Indian subspecies is restricted to Kanha NP and Satpura tiger Reserve, whereas other two subspecies have patchy destribution in northern eastern India and Indo-gangetic plains. It is adapted to live in floded grasslands (except subspecies branderi) by having splayed hooves. It is a native species of India, and now has its range shrunk drastically. Swamp deer is active mainly during daytime feeding on grasses and aquatic plants.

Conservation Status:

This species is listed as Vulnerable in the IUCN Red List of Threatened species (

According to IUCN Red List assessment population of this species is decreasing all over its range. Western swamp deer (R. d. duvauceli) population is between 1500 and 2000, eastern swamp deer (R. d. ranjitsinhi) population is about 1000 individuals and hardground barasingha or southern swamp deer (R. d. branderi) population is between 300 and 750 individuals. This species is restricted to small localities and patchily as it is extinct from large part of its historic range. Major threat to its survival come from habitat loss and fragmentation. Anthropogenic activities such as agriculture expansion and overgrazing by livestock are major reasons for its habitat loss and population decline. Apart from that, hunting for meat, skin and antlers is another issue that causes direct threat to it survival.

Mammalia > Artiodactyla > Cervidae > Rucervus

Cite this page along with its URL as:
Bayani, A. 2022. Rucervus duvaucelii G. Cuvier, 1823 – Swamp Deer. A. Bayani, R. Chakravarty, P. Roy, and K. Kunte (editors). Mammals of India, v. 1.13. editors.
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