World’s rarest deer found on Philippine Island!

Visayan Spotted Deer

Visayan Spotted Deer at Wien Zoo

The Negros Interior Biodiversity Expedition (NIBE) has confirmed that it had found evidence of two groups of the Visayan Spotted Deer alive and well in the North Negros Natural Park (NNNP) in the Philippines.

The team of experts recently returned (July 2009) from the first scientific exploration of the park interior where they recorded the presence of many endangered and endemic species, with several new species records for the NNNP.

The Visayan Spotted Deer (Cervus alfredi) is endemic to the Visayan islands of the central Philippines, formerly reported on only seven islands (Cebu, Guimaras, Leyte, Masbate, Negros, Panay, and Samar), but now thought to remain only on the islands of Panay and Negros. It is a small deer found only in tropical rainforests up to about 1500 metres and has been hunted from 95% of its range. The population within the NNNP was believed to be one of the few viable breeding groups left in world with possibly no more than a couple of hundred individuals surviving. Heavy hunting pressure has led to the deer not being recorded in the NNNP for many years until the NIBE team found fresh deer droppings in several locations, deer tracks and significant evidence of feeding activity.

Source and more info: Wildlife Extra.

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