Visayan Spotted Deer

Visayan Spotted Deer

Philippine spotted deer, Prince Alfred's deer

Kingdom
Phylum
Subphylum
Class
Order
Suborder
Family
Subfamily
Genus
SPECIES
Rusa alfredi
Population size
700
Life Span
15-20 yrs
WEIGHT
25-80 kg
HEIGHT
70-80 cm
LENGTH
125-130 cm

The Visayan spotted deer is a nocturnal and endangered species of deer. It is easily distinguished from other species of deer in the Philippines by the distinctive "A" pattern of beige spots which dot its deep brown back and sides. Other distinctive features include cream underparts and white fur on the chin and lower lip. The animal's head and neck are brown but lighter than the body, and the eyes are ringed with paler fur. Males are larger than females and have short, thick, bumpy antlers.

Distribution

Visayan spotted deers are found only in the rainforests of the Visayan islands of Panay and Negros of the central Philippines. Their habitat is in dense cogon grassland, and primary and secondary forest. They may also visit burnt-out forest clearings for the floral ash.

Geography

Continents
Subcontinents
Countries

Climate zones

Habits and Lifestyle

Visayan spotted deer are nocturnal and come out at dusk to feed. They are very cryptic and cautious animals and will quickly hide into dense vegetation when they sense any danger. They are usually seen singly and or in small groups of up 3 individuals.

Group name
Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition

Visayan spotted deer are herbivores (graminivores, folivores). Their diet consists of a variety of different types of grasses, leaves, and buds within the forest.

Mating Habits

REPRODUCTION SEASON
November-December
PREGNANCY DURATION
240 days
BABY CARRYING
1 fawn
FEMALE NAME
doe, hind
MALE NAME
buck, stag
BABY NAME
fawn

Visayan spotted deer breed from November to December, although mating could begin earlier. Males have a roaring call to attract females. Reports mostly mention a single calf with a mated pair, although conclusive evidence on the number of young is not available because of the rarity of sightings. Calves are born after a gestation period of around 240 days. Weaning takes place at 6 months and the calves are mature from 12 months.

Population

Population threats

Hunting and forest clearances as a result of logging activities and agricultural conversion are thought to be the causes of a devastating drop in the numbers of Visayan deer. Hunting, both by locals and sport hunters has also made an impact; subsistence hunting, sales of venison to local markets and specialty restaurants, and live trapping for the pet trade have all contributed to the species' dwindling numbers. Isolation and reduction of the population are likely to have led to some herds becoming moribund.

Population number

According to the IUCN Red List, the total population size of the Visayan spotted deer is 700 mature individuals. Currently, this species is classified as Endangered (EN) on the IUCN Red List and its numbers today are decreasing.

References

1. Visayan Spotted Deer on Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visayan_spotted_deer
2. Visayan Spotted Deer on The IUCN Red List site - https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/4273/22168782

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