Sunday 20 April 2014

Endangered hamster-sized deer born in zoo

A baby Java mouse-deer - one of the smallest hoofed animals in the world - has been born at a zoo in southern Spain.

The newborn deer is "no bigger than a hamster" and weighs about 100 grams, staff at Bioparc Fuengirola tell the El Pais newspaper. Adult Java mouse-deer are rarely bigger than rabbits or weigh more than 1kg (2.2lb).

They are also known to be fiercely intelligent, and the species represents wisdom in many local legends in its
native Java.

The future of the species is threatened by massive deforestation in South East Asia and the replacement of
jungles with oil palm plantations.

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