Fawn born to endangered gazelles in southern Israel
Fauna to fawn over

Fawn born to endangered gazelles in southern Israel

Just 30 to 40 acacia gazelles remain in a protected area of the Arava desert

Sue Surkes is The Times of Israel's environment reporter.

A male acacia gazelle with the new fawn. (Eran Hyams, Israel Nature and Parks Authority)
A male acacia gazelle with the new fawn. (Eran Hyams, Israel Nature and Parks Authority)

The Jewish New Year began with new life and the addition of a fawn to Israel’s community of endemic, critically endangered, acacia gazelles.

Only 30 to 40 of these gazelles — which are found only in Israel — remain. Most live in a closed area of the Yotvata Hai-Bar Reserve in the southern Arava desert where they can be protected and left to breed.

They are counted twice a year and checked for health problems. Rangers discovered the new fawn by chance, rather than as part of an official tallying.

The acacia gazelle is a subspecies of the more common mountain gazelle, 3,100 of which are estimated to be left in Israel. Herds are also located in Jordan and Turkey. Less than 3,000 in total are thought to still live in the wild.

Dr. David Mallon, a British zoologist and antelope expert, recommended four years ago that this gazelle’s status on the environmental organization’s Red List be upgraded from “vulnerable” to “endangered.”

As is the case with most of Israel’s flora and fauna, the antelope population’s decline stems largely from the reduction of their habitats due to construction, paving of roads and erection of fences.

Join us!
A message from the Editor of Times of Israel
David Horovitz

The Times of Israel covers one of the most complicated, and contentious, parts of the world. Determined to keep readers fully informed and enable them to form and flesh out their own opinions, The Times of Israel has gradually established itself as the leading source of independent and fair-minded journalism on Israel, the region and the Jewish world.

We've achieved this by investing ever-greater resources in our journalism while keeping all of the content on our site free.

Unlike many other news sites, we have not put up a paywall. But we would like to invite readers who can afford to do so, and for whom The Times of Israel has become important, to help support our journalism by joining The Times of Israel Community. Join now and for as little as $6 a month you can both help ensure our ongoing investment in quality journalism, and enjoy special status and benefits as a Times of Israel Community member.

Become a member of The Times of Israel Community
read more: