So…continuing with the woodland theme…today we have…deer 🙂
Origins & history. Roe deer are native to Britain, having been present since before the Mesolithic period (6000 to 10000 years b.p.).
The extant species of fallow deer found in Britain was introduced by the Normans in the 10th century although some would suggest that the Romans attempted to introduce it here much earlier.
Red deer migrated into Britain from Europe 11000 years ago. They were used extensively by Mesolithic man as a source of food, skins and tools (bones and antlers).
Muntjac were first introduced from China to Woburn Park in Bedfordshire in the early 20th century. Deliberate releases and escapes from Woburn, Northamptonshire and Warwickshire lead to feral populations establishing.
Sika were first introduced from the Far East into Britain in 1860. Several subspecies, including Chinese, Japanese, Formosan and Manchurian were introduced into parks but the only free living form in Britain is the Japanese sika.
The Chinese water deer’s tusks indicate that it is a very primitive form of deer. Tusks were developed as weapons by deer before antlers evolved. Chinese water deer were first kept at London Zoo in 1873 but escaped from Whipsnade Zoo after introduction there in 1929. Originally being centred around their site of escape they slowly spread to surrounding areas of suitable habitat.
Love Ele ~X~