Thursday, April 05, 2007

Almost Roadkill

Tonight on our way back from a neighboring city, my supervisor and I got to meet another local. It was not in the manner we expected though. It was about dusk and we were going around a bend when the driver slams on the breaks and both of us, who are about half-asleep by this point, almost fall out of the seats. Through tangled seatbelts and smoke from the tires we look up at this massive beast. It had no trunk and it was too skinny to be an elephant, but we were still looking up at it from our Scorpio suv (about the size of a Ford Expedition). I couldn't tell at first if it was a big horse or whatever it was, but then I saw a small set of horns. It had a small head with a long thick neck and a large, strong-looking body. Then it jumped into the tall grass on the side of the road and into the dark. The other guys in the car swears it was a moose, but I have my doubts.

Upon a little research and a few pictures online, I think I found a match. The local name is the Nilgai, and in English we would call it the Blue Bull Antelope. It just so happens to be the largest antelope species in asia. It's got my vote. But they say, (scientists as well as locals) that a full grown male while even wounded can overpower a tiger and get away and the average adult is not intimidated by a leopard. I don't know, but it didn't even look at the 2-ton pair of headlights that it almost bacame close friends with, I think the animal would have won that fight.