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Julie Larsen Maher ©WCS
Julie Larsen Maher ©WCS
A southern pudu, the world's smallest deer, was recently born at the Queens Zoo.

It’s a girl!

The Queens Zoo recently welcomed a new edition—a southern pudu, the world’s smallest deer species.

Born on April 29, the female fawn weighed one pound at birth, and can reach 20 pounds and around 12 to 14 inches at the shoulder as an adult, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society. It is still nursing, but will soon transition to a diet of fresh leaves, grain, kale, carrots and hay.

Native to Chile and Argentina, southern pudu make up for their small stature in other ways, according to the WCS. They bark when they sense danger, can climb fallen trees and when chased by predators run in a zig-zag pattern.

Last summer, another southern pudu, also weighing about one pound at birth, was born at the zoo.

The Queens Zoo breeds pudu, which are designated “Vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, as part of the Species Survival Program.  The cooperative breeding program was created to enhance the genetic viability and demographic stability of animal populations in zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

 

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