Southern Red Muntjac Deer Muntiacus muntjak

Southern Red Muntjac Deer
Southern Red Muntjac Deer
Southern Red Muntjac Deer
The Southern Red Muntjac Deer is native to southeast Asia, specifically the Malaysian Peninsula and Indonesian Sunda Islands.
Before the 1990s, science recognised two species of Muntjac Deer: the Chinese Muntjac, also called Reeves', native to southeastern China and Taiwan (and feral in the UK and Benelux), and the Indian Muntjac covering the remainder of South and Southeast Asia (including parts of China). While these two species looked similar and had similar behaviour, it had been recognised that the Chinese Muntjac had 46 chromosomes and the Indian Muntjac had 7(male)-6(female), the lowest number for any mammal.
In the late twentieth century a number of other muntjac species were defined, mainly in Indochina, and the Indian Muntjac, with its several subspecies, was split (accepted 2014) into two different species: the Southern Red (above) retaining the M. muntjak name and the Northern Red becoming M. vaginalis. The many subspecies were split accordingly. Given the vast range of South and Southeast Asia covered by the Northern and the still unresolved taxonomic status of all the subspecies, it is likely that further research will lead to further separated species in the future (it is said there are 3 in India alone). Currently there are just over a dozen species of Muntjac Deer, including the Northern Red and Southern Red from the previous "Indian Muntjac" family.
Hunting for meat, fur and body parts for medicine together with loss of habitat is reducing all native populations of Muntjac Deer.