Reeves's Muntjac

Reeves's Muntjac

Chinese muntjac

Kingdom
Phylum
Subphylum
Class
Order
Suborder
Family
Subfamily
Genus
SPECIES
Muntiacus reevesi
Population size
Unknown
Life Span
10-18 yrs
WEIGHT
10-18 kg
HEIGHT
0.5 m
LENGTH
0.95 m

Reeves's muntjacs are native to East Asia. They are also known as barking deer due to their distinctive barking sound. Reeves's muntjacs are reddish-brown in appearance with striped markings on their face. Their belly is creamy-white, with lighter fur extending to the neck, chin, and the underside of the tail. The males have short antlers and long upper canines (tusks). Females have bony lumps on their foreheads and localized black spots. Both males and females Reeves's muntjacs also have preorbital glands. These glands produce a creamy liquid which is used for chemical communication.

Video

Distribution

Reeves's muntjacs are found in southeastern China (from Gansu to Yunnan) and Taiwan. In China, these deer inhabit rocky places and open woodlands of pine and oak. They also occur in low mountains and hilly areas, at forest edges and in shrubby habitats. In Taiwan, Reeves's muntjacs are found mostly in forested areas. There they live in habitats that range from subtropical lowlands to coniferous forests or alpine grassland at the highest altitudes.

Geography

Continents
Subcontinents
Countries
Introduced Countries

Climate zones

Habits and Lifestyle

Reeves's muntjacs are generally solitary and crepuscular animals. They are territorial and both males and females defend small territories. They mark their territories with preorbital gland secretions that are thought to be pheromonal in nature. Territories of females usually overlap, but male territories overlap only with those of females, not of other males. When defending their territory or fighting for females, males first use their antlers to push enemies off balance so they can wound them with their upper canine teeth. Reeves's muntjacs have a habit of creating trails through their territory. They use these trails for ease of movement. They also like to trample down and clear areas for sleep. In order to communicate with each other, Reeves's muntjacs use vocalizations and chemical signals. They bark when feeling threatened or in the presence of a dominant conspecific. Chemical communication consists of scent marks that muntjacs leave on vegetation when marking the territory.

Group name
Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition

Reeves's muntjacs are omnivorous creatures. They feed on herbs, blossoms, succulent shoots, fungi, berries, grasses, and nuts. They may also eat tree bark. Eggs and carrion are eaten opportunistically.

Mating Habits

MATING BEHAVIOR
REPRODUCTION SEASON
year-round
PREGNANCY DURATION
209-220 days
BABY CARRYING
1-2 fawns
INDEPENDENT AGE
6 months
FEMALE NAME
doe
MALE NAME
buck, stag
BABY NAME
fawn

Reeves's muntjacs have a polygynous mating system. This means that males mate with more than one female during each breeding season. These muntjacs breed throughout the year. The gestation period lasts from 209 to 220 days and females give birth to 1 or 2 fawns. Young are born precocial and develop very quickly. They are weaned early and begin to eat solid foods. Females generally nurse their fawns around 17 weeks. When fawns are 6 months old, they leave the mother's territory. Females become reproductively mature within the first year of life.

Population

Population threats

Reeves's muntjacs are threatened mainly by the habitat destruction and hunting. They are hunted for food and for their soft skins which were used in the fur market, beauty-care products, musical instruments, lenses, and antique items packaging. Their forest habitat is being lost due to logging, agriculture, and urbanization.

Population number

The IUCN Red List and other sources don’t provide the number of the Reeves's muntjac total population size. Currently, this species is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List but its numbers today are decreasing.

References

1. Reeves's Muntjac on Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reeves%27s_muntjac
2. Reeves's Muntjac on The IUCN Red Listt site - https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/42191/22166608

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