The Changthangi or Chagra is a breed of cashmere goat native to the high plateaux of Ladakh in India. The cold temperatures in the region are the primary factor in the growth of the fine pashmina grade of cashmere wool for which they are reared. They are also used as pack animals and for meat.:369
|Country of origin||India|
|Skin colour||white or light brown:369|
|Wool colour||usually white, also black, brown or grey:369|
The Changthangi breed of cashmere goat grows a thick undercoat of hair which is the source of Kashmir pashmina wool – the world's finest cashmere measuring between 12-15 microns in fiber thickness. These goats are generally domesticated and are reared by nomadic communities called the Changpa in the Changthang regions of Ladakh, including the Rupshu, Demchok/Skakjung and the Pangong Lake regions.
The gotats survive on grass in Ladakh, where temperatures plunge to as low as −20 °C (−4.00 °F). These goats provide the wool for Kashmir's famous pashmina shawls. Shawls made from Pashmina wool are considered very fine, and are exported worldwide.
The Changthangi goats have revitalized the poor economy of Changthang, Ladakh where the wool production generates more than $8 million a year.
Noori, the world's first cloned Pashmina goat, was cloned at the Faculty of Veterinary Sciences and Animal Husbandry of the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir (SKUAST) in Shuhama, 25 km east of Srinagar, on 15 March 2012.
The changthangi has a double coat, consisting of a thick undercoat and a dense, slightly wavy or straight outer coat. Its hair is usually white. Its body is of medium size, generally between 22 and 26 inches, in proportion to its height. The horns are rounded and always move upward. The average lifespan of this goat is 10 to 12 years.
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