Red deer






Cervus elaphus



The red deer is an Artiodactyla (even-toed ungulate) mammal of the Cervidae family. It is spread over a wide distribution area, which stretches from Europe and North Africa to Central Asia, Siberia, the Far East and North America.
Only the males have antlers, pronged and deciduous horns, that are renewed every spring, increasing in size, weight and ramifications. Each year, the antlers fall off and are reborn from the same stem, reaching the maximum size within 4 months time; they are covered by the characteristic protecting velvet, that soon will be lost. The stages can reach extraordinary dimensions of 120 cm and weigh above 20 kg. The adult males are up to 250 cm long and 120 cm high at the shoulder, their weight ranges from 200 to more than 250 kg.
Females are considerably smaller. In the wild, the red deer prefers forest environments, with glades or scattered bushes. Characterised by his majestic strut, red deer is an elegant, fast (up to 60 km/h) and agile to jump mammal. Outside of the mating season the red deers live in herds. During playback, the dominant males defend harems of hinds from the rival males they attract. The deer is an herbivore that feeds both day and night. In the winter, it digs under the snow to look for food supplies. Aside from humans, the deers have few natural predators, and only the wolf can be a serious threat.

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