Sambar deer

Friday, January 4, 2008

After a lengthy process, the Sambar Deer has formally been listed as a threat to biodiversity in Victoria, and will be listed under the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act.

Deer populations are increasing every year in Gippsland and their behaviour is threatening very sensitive areas such as rainforests and riparian forests. They can grow up to 1.2 metres tall at the shoulders and weigh 240 kg. They are like a small horse. They browse on native plants, some of which are rare and finding it hard to survive where deer are present. The males also severely thrash their antlers against young saplings and shrubs to mark their territory and remove the velvet from their new set of antlers each year. The population is estimated to be around 40,000 - 70,000 in eastern Victoria.

Rohan Bilney

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