Gayal Bos gaurus f frontalis

The gayal or mithan is the domesticated form of the wild gaur (B. gaurus). For a long time, it was not clear if the gayal and gaur were the same separated species or if the gayal had developed by crossbreeding of a gaur with bantengs or zebu. The gayal is noticeably smaller than the gaur, it has shorter conical horns, a markedly shorter skull, and a wider and flatter forehead. It has a large double dewlap on the chin and neck. It is most commonly brown and black but can also be spotted or white. The gayal is not a typical domestic animal; it usually lives in small groups in the jungle at the periphery of a village and comes back to the village only towards evening, lured by salt. The economic use of the gayal is insignificant. Sometimes is it used for field work or for its meat; its milk is not drinkable. The gayal was used by many people as a sacrificial animal or as currency. Sometimes the animals escape and run wild, but the domestication influence is still seen in their calm temperament. Feral populations live in northern India.

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