Muntjacs make an appearance
Although NatureSpy have been camera trapping for years, we ticked off a new species of deer last month.
Ok; so not strictly a native species, but it is living wild in areas of southern England and into Wales.
It is of course the primitive muntjac deer – and to give the British species its proper name, Reeves’ muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi).
The muntjac revealed itself when NatureSpy ran a Camera Trapping for Wildlife Conservation course at Warwickshire College’s Moreton Morrell campus.
From the footage (the above video being a small selection), it definitely appears there are at least 3 in this small wood, perhaps more. One male gives a good few of his small antlers.
They are also generally thought to be solitary but sometimes occur in pairs – our camera traps caught both pairs and lone individuals.
The muntjac is actually native to southern China and Taiwan, though appears to feel at home in this Warwickshire woodland.
Camera trapping data from China suggests Reeve’s muntjac is crepuscular rather than nocturnal¹, though we didn’t get enough data in Warwickshire to test this – one for the future!
1. Pei, K. J.-C., Chiang, P. J., 2004. Present status and conservation of Formosan clouded leopard and other medium-to-large mammals at Tawu Nature Reserve and vicinities (3). Report Conservation Research Series No.92-02. Council of Agriculture, Taiwan Forestry Bureau.