Chinese muntjac, Reeves muntjac, Mastreani deer or barking deer…take your pick.
Chinese muntjac are native to South East China but were introduced to the Britain around 1900. Their numbers and range in the U.K. have increased considerably over the years and they can now be found in Wales as well.
They are the oldest deer known to man with fossil records dating back to somewhere between fifteen and thirty million years ago!
One thing that sets the muntjac apart from our native deer is that male muntjacs have ‘tusks’. These are actually downward pointing canine teeth and come in useful when in a fight for territory.
Another way to tell if a muntjac is really a muntjac is by the very visible glands on their face. All muntjac have two pairs and they all are used for marking of territories.
Listed as least concern, muntjac numbers are healthy. Infact, it is thought that they may well become the most numerous species of deer in England. Mainly found in woods and forests they are known to stray into gardens and help themselves to the plants…it is here where they can come into conflict with humans.