- Members of the Bishnoi, a tribe in a remote area of Rajasthan, a state in the northern part of India breastfeeds baby deer alongside their own kids
- The tribe believes that the deer is a sacred animal and will go to any length in order to make sure the animals are protected
- Photos of mothers from Bishnoi tribe breastfeeding baby deer emerged online and had caught the attention of many online users around the globe
RAJASTHAN, India – Photos of mothers from a tribe in India showing them breastfeeding baby deer alongside their own kids emerged online and caught the attention of many online users around the globe.
Jess Staufenberg mentioned in his article for Independent published on May 3 that the mothers seen on the photos are members of the Bishnoi, a tribe in a remote area of Rajasthan; a state in the northern part of India.
The tribe believes that the deer is a sacred animal and will go to any length in order to make sure the animals are protected.
“These baby deer are my life and they’re like my own children,” said Mangi Devi Bishnoi; a 45-year-old housewife and member of the tribe.
An article by Ben Russell for The Mirror published on April 30 said that Mangi feeds the deer with milk and food in order to make sure that the animals receive proper care and attention just like any other member of the family.
“I feed them milk and food and ensure they’re given proper care and attention in the house like all my family members,” Mangi said.
“They are not orphans when they have us around, they have new mothers like me who offer them a mother’s feed for a healthy life,” she added.
Bishnoi is a religious group found in the Western Thar Desert and northern states of India and had derived their name from Vishnoi (Bishnoi), who are the worshippers of God “Vishnu”.
Bishnois follow a set of 29 principles given by Guru Jambheshwar; who gave a message to protect trees and wildlife around 540 years ago, prophesying that harming the environment means harming yourself.
Among the principles of the Bishnois include a ban on killing animals and felling green trees, and providing protection to all life forms. The community also carefully check that the firewood they use is without any living creature, including small insects.
Wearing blue clothes is prohibited to the members of the community because the dye for coloring them is obtained by cutting a lot of shrubs.
A video from 2013 explains the practice: