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Chinese Water Deer

(Hydropotes inermis)

Shoulder height: 50-55cm Weight: 11-15kg Lifespan: max. 11 years


Identification: These are small deer with large ears and they do not produce antlers. The adult males can be recognised by their long curved upper canines. General: They were brought to Britain in 1873 and first wild sightings were in 1945. They occur in low densities in arable land but mostly in reed beds, fenlands and woodlands. They are efficient swimmers. While running away they kick their heels up. They are solitary animals – the rut occurs in December with the males holding the females within their territory. Rival males may fight with stabbing and tearing actions of their tusks and Footprints damage to ears is common. They are a chestnut-brown in summer turning to pale grey in winter. Distribution UK: Concentrated in East Anglia, the strongholds being Woodwalton Fen, the Norfolk Broads and the woodland around Woburn. The population is about 1,500 and slowly increasing. MH MH 87

Cambridgeshire Mammal Atlas  
Cambridgeshire Mammal Atlas