Tufted Deer is A Peculiar Member of the Deer Family

A tufted deer is kind of deer, which is relatively small. The binomial taxonomy suggests its name to be Elaphodus cephalophu. They are mainly found in Chinese areas of southern eastern coast to the eastern Tibetan border. Some old survey records say that they were available in the northeastern parts of Myanmar as well. Their natural habitat consists of damp deep forests, both evergreen and deciduous located high above 500 m to 4500 m above the mean sea level. They are also prevalent nearby salt licks.

The tufted deer is on the leaned and short side in appearance. It has a coarse hairy coat just like regular mammals, which tend to change colors with season. In winter, it is almost black and in summer, it is chocolate brown. There is a horseshoe shaped tuft of hair on their forehead, which gives their name. Another striking feature is the presence of protruding canines, which are fang-like only in the males of the species. Very short antlers are present in the males hidden beneath the long tufts.

These animals are usually stay in pairs and are solitary in nature. They have their own territories, which are guarded by the males of the species. These animals are herbivores. Another peculiar feature is that the males bark to attract female partners during the mating season. Their life span is generally 10 to 12 years. Substantial decreases in the count of these animals have been noticed since a survey of 1998 and they have been conserved since then.


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