Red deer

As one of the largest deer species, the red deer holds a prominent place in the cultural and natural history of many European, Asian, and North African regions. They are robust and large, with males (stags) significantly larger than females (hinds). One of the most distinctive features of the red deer is its antlers, which are branched and can grow up to one meter in width. These antlers are shed and regrown annually, with their size and complexity increasing as the deer ages. Their coat varies seasonally, being thicker and darker during winter months and lighter in the summer. Their winter coat is typically grey to brown, with a denser, woolly undercoat for insulation, while the summer coat is more reddish-brown.

Red deer are adaptable to various habitats but primarily favor forested areas interspersed with open glades, moorlands, and grasslands where they can graze and browse. Originally widespread across much of Europe and parts of Asia and North Africa, their range has been reduced and fragmented due to human activities. However, they have also been introduced to other regions, such as Australia and New Zealand, for sport hunting and farming. They are herbivores, feeding on a mix of grasses, leaves, twigs, and bark. In the harsher winter months, they may also consume more substantial foliage and evergreens to sustain themselves. They are ruminants, which means they have a specialized stomach to ferment plant material and extract sufficient nutrients.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Albania
EX
Extinct locally
Algeria
2015
Argentina
2015
Introduced
Armenia
2015
Australia
2015
Introduced
Austria
2015
Azerbaijan
2015
Belarus
2015
Belgium
2015
Bosnia And Herz.
2015
Bulgaria
2015
Chile
2015
Introduced
Croatia
2015
Czechia
2015
Denmark
2015
Estonia
2015
France
2015
Mainland
Georgia
2015
Germany
2015
Greece
2015
Reintroduced
Hungary
2015
Iran
2015
Ireland
2015
Israel
EX
Extinct locally
Italy
2015
Jordan
EX
Extinct locally
Latvia
2015
Lebanon
EX
Extinct locally
Lithuania
2015
Luxembourg
2015
Moldova
2015
Montenegro
2015
Morocco
2015
Reintroduced
Netherlands
2015
New Zealand
2015
Introduced
North Macedonia
2015
Norway
2015
Poland
2015
Romania
2015
Russia
2015
Serbia
2015
Slovakia
2015
Slovenia
2015
Sweden
2015
Switzerland
2015
Syria
EX
Extinct locally
Tunisia
2015
Turkey
2015
Ukraine
2015

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No