Fallow Deer

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Fallow Deer
Male (buck)
Female (doe)
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Family: Cervidae
Subfamily: Cervinae
Genus: Dama
Species: D. dama
Binomial name
Dama dama
(Linnaeus, 1758)
Range
1: Native
2: Possibly native
3: Early human introductions
4: Modern human introductions

The Fallow Deer (Dama dama) is a type of deer from the family Cervidae. The animal originally lived in Eurasia, but people have brought it to other parts of the world like Australia.

The male is called a buck, the female is a doe, and the young a fawn. They live for about 12–16 years. All of the Fallow Deer have white spots on their backs, and black tips at the ends of their tails. Only bucks have antlers, which are wide and shaped like a shovel.

They are grazing animals. They like to live in an area that is mixed woodland and open grassland. They try to stay together in groups of up to 150.

Colours[change | change source]

They do have a lot of different coloured coats (hair). There are four main colours: "common", "menil", "melanistic" and "white".[2] The Common coat is a brown coat with white spots that are best seen in the summer. In the winter the coat is much darker. The white coat is lightest colored, almost white. The common and menil coat are darker. The melanistic coat is very dark, sometimes even black.

Three of the color variants found at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Texas

Historical herds[change | change source]

One noted historical herd of fallow deer is located in the Ottenby Preserve in Öland, Sweden. Karl X Gustav built a drystone wall of four kilometres long around a royal fallow deer herd in the mid 17th century. The herd still exists as of 2006.[3] Another herd lives in Phoenix Park in Ireland. 400-450 fallow deer descend from the original herd introduced in the 1660s.[4]

References[change | change source]

Notes[change | change source]

  1. Masseti, M. & Mertzanidou, D. (2008). Dama dama. 2008 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2008. Retrieved on 8 April 2009. Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is of least concern.
  2. The British Deer Society
  3. Environmental Baseline Study, Lumina Technologies, Öland, Sweden, July, 2004
  4. http://www.phoenixpark.ie/about/naturebiodiversity/fauna/

Further reading[change | change source]

  • FAO ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND HEALTH PAPER 27. (1982). Deer farming guidelines on practical aspects. ISBN 92-5-101137-0. Retrieved on 4 January 2008.
  • Clutton-Brock, J. (1978). A Natural History of Domesticated Animals. London, British Museum.
  • Lyneborg, L. (1971). Mammals [of Europe]. ISBN 0-7137-0548-5.

Other websites[change | change source]