DEER (Capreolus capreolus)

deer
This is a relatively small specimen of the Cervus Genus. In the summer, their fur is red and brown; while it´s dark brown or black during the winter. Their rear is white, and they have a 2-3 cm long tail. They can become up to 135 cm long and up to 75 cm tall. Their average weight is 20 kg – it varies 13 – 30 kg. Their horns, which grow vertically and only males have them, can grow as long as 25 cm. These horns fall off during the winter and grow back during the spring.
Deer live in small groups and mainly feed at night. They mostly eat leafs, young sprouts, bark, grass, berries, etc… They like to eat humid grass. They don´t like to eat grass off pastures that were previously used by farm animals (sheep, goats, cattle, etc...). They mate in July – August. After the insemination, the foetus’s development is halted until January. This prolongs the gestation period to 39 – 42 weeks. Deer is the only ungulate with a prolonged implantation.
Females become sexually mature at 16 months, gestation lasts for 10 months. They usually give birth in June to 1-3 offspring. The younglings are for some time completely dependent on their mother. The younglings have white freckles until their 6th week. This is when many people make the mistake of petting the animal (usually in high grass).
If in captivity, they live up to 10 years – in nature only up to 3 years of age. They have many enemies, such as lynx, bear, wolf, dogs and also people near urban areas.

Interesting:

There are cases when people crossbred a sheep and a deer.


Dusan Kreslin
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