RZSS/Siân Addison

Deer-y me!

Posted: 9th October, 2017

A rare and endangered Visayan spotted deer fawn has been born at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo.

The male calf was born to mum Summer and dad Jochem. The Visayan spotted deer is one of the rarest and most narrowly distributed mammals in the world, with only a few hundred believed to remain in the wild.

Karen Stiven, Senior Keeper at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo said;

“We are very excited to welcome the new male fawn to our collection. He has been named Tember and will be looked after by mum for the first six months before he slowly begins developing more confidence. This is another great achievement and testament to the hard work the hoof stock team have been putting in over the past several months here at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo. This birth is important as Tember will go on to play an important role in safeguarding his species against extinction as part of the European breeding programme.”

The deer is thought to be a mainly nocturnal species, emerging only at dusk to feed on a variety of food such as grasses, leaves and buds. The species is typically found in the rainforests of Visayan Islands and it is one of three native species to the Philippines.

Visayan spotted deer (Rusa alfredi) are classified on the IUCN Red List as Endangered and the population is reportedly declining. The species is in danger from intensive hunting, deforestation and land clearing all pose a significant threat to them.

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