So today I thought I'd cover a creature that I always love seeing. They mainly catch me by surprise when I'm walking in woods or bounding through fields when we're driving somewhere. I'm talking about Red Deer :-)
|Reed Deer (Cervus elaphus)|
- They are our largest land mammal
- They are reddest in summer going a bit more grey brown in the winter
- Males are stags, females are hinds and young are fawns
- Stags can weigh up to 190kg
- In the Autumn stags 'rut' which is an impressive sight but hard on them. A rut is essentially a competition for the right to breed with groups of hinds. Sometimes it settled by walking around and roaring but other times it involves running and clashing antlers. This can injure or kill stags
|Grazing outside a hide at Leighton Moss|
- They like woodland but have adapted to live in open hills where there isn't much tree cover
- They are most active at dawn and dusk but will be active other times especially if they are in areas where they get disturbed.
- Red Deer have been in Britain since the end of the last ice age over 10,000 years ago.
- They are herbivores and eat grass, berries, heather, shrubs and tree shoots.
- As herbivores if their numbers get too big they can harm crops and upset farmers so in most areas the numbers are controlled. :-(
BBC Nature - Red Deer
The British Deer Society - Red Deer
Forestry Commission - Red Deer
Hope you enjoyed,