Tiny hamster-sized deer born in southern Spain

The Java mouse-deer, indigenous to Indonesia, is increasingly under threat in the wild due to destructive palm oil plantations

Tomas Jivanda
Friday 25 April 2014 13:24
Comments
The tiny deer will grow no larger than a rabbit
The tiny deer will grow no larger than a rabbit

A tiny hamster sized deer has been born at a southern Spanish zoo. The newborn, an endangered Java mouse-deer weighs just 100 grams, staff from Bioparc Fuengirola said.

The Java mouse-deer is one of the smallest hoofed animals in the world - even once the youngster is fully grown it will be no larger than a rabbit and weigh just 1kg.

Found only in the forests of Java, Indonesia, the mouse-deer is considered to be an intelligent and wise creature by local folklore.

The fawn is the eighth to be born at the zoo since 2006 as part of a European breeding programme. It’s mother was also born in Fuengirola in 2007 while its father was moved to Spain from Lille in France a year ago as part of the coordinated effort.

The delicate animal now lives with its parents in an area of the zoo called ‘The Hidden Forest’ which is designed to look like an Asian jungle filled with temple ruins.

The guilty secrets of palm oil

There are now 43 Java mouse-deers held in captivity across Europe, the zoo said, warning that in the wild the species is increasingly under threat due to their forest home being destroyed and replaced with palm oil plantations - an ingredient used by almost every big chocolate brand consumed in the west.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in