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Deer in Ireland

Old 11-01-2005, 11:44 AM
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Default Deer in Ireland

My wife and I were in Ireland about a year ago. We toured the grounds of Bunratty Castle near Shannon. As we came around the corner we came upon this monster, and me without a gun!! I'm not sure what he is but he is sure beautiful.

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Old 11-01-2005, 11:57 AM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland

looks like a stag
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Old 11-01-2005, 12:15 PM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland

Red Deer .
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Old 11-01-2005, 12:52 PM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland

wow! that is nice
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Old 11-01-2005, 01:05 PM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland

No gun, dern the luck.
I'm glad you had a camera though.
Very nice, thanks for sharing.

PK
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Old 11-01-2005, 02:55 PM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland

I believe it's called a Sika Stag.
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Old 11-01-2005, 07:19 PM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland

Not a sika, thats a red stag. Sika stags are MUCH smaller and generally only have 6-8 points.
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Old 11-01-2005, 08:00 PM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland

Definatly a Red Stag which are native to western europe, definatly not a sika which are from Japan and are a darker brownish color as opposed to the red stags more reddish coat.
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Old 11-01-2005, 08:15 PM
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Default RE: Deer in Ireland


Ireland has three species, Red, Sika and Fallow Deer.






Sika Deer were first brought to Ireland in 1860 by Lord Powerscourt to his estate in Co. Wicklow. The breed arrived in Killarney in 1865 as game deer. One stag and two hinds were released in the Muckross Estate and today there are between 600 and 700 in the National Park area. The Killarney herd of Sika Deer is one of only three in the world that are nearest to the pure bred Sika. They are on the endangered species list since 1987 by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
The threat of Red Deer crossed with Sika hybridisation is the greatest worry now in the Killarney area. Hybridisation has occurred in most parts of the world, including other parts of Ireland.
The Sika Deer is the smallest of the three species of deer in Ireland. The summer coat is light brown with white spots. In contrast the winter coat is dark-grey and can look quite black from a distance. The rump patch is white at all times and flares out when the animal is startled.
The antlers are characteristically V-shaped and many have from four to six points, four being the most common. They begin to grow in the second year in April and finish in August. They are cast every year in April and new antlers begin to grow again. While growing they are covered in velvet to protect the antler and help supply minerals to the new bone.
Sika deer travel in small herds. The rut season begins in September and lasts about six weeks. During the rut the stag utters a high pitched scream which sounds like a whistle to mark out his territory and warn other stags to keep away
Calves are born in May/June and are covered with white spots. Sika calves stay with their mothers for one year until next year’s calf is born.
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Old 11-01-2005, 10:02 PM
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"The Killarney herd of Sika Deer is one of only three in the world that are nearest to the pure bred Sika."

That can be somewhat misleading, as there are quite a few populations of pure sika strain, it really depends on which subspecies you are talking about. For instance the Dombrowski and Manchurain are often inter bread and treated by many as the same sub species due to their common traits. The sikas in Japan and the outlying islands are mostly purebred stock. (as are the Vietanese species) The ones located in mongolia and manchuria are more likely to cross breed with each other, and of course those populations that have been introdused to non native areas (england/scotland/texas) are much more likely to be crossbread. In fact there are concerns from some scientists that some of the sub species may not even exist as a pure strain anymore due to cross breeding. The wild sikas in Maryland/Virginia are pure Yakushimea sikas, and since they are protected in japan, may be the only huntable wild population of them! Sorry for rambling but sikas are a bit of a fascination for me and I find there toxonomy and history very intriguing.

All that stated that stag pictured is one heck of a Red Stag for ireland, where they generally don't get as big as the ones you see in magazines from New Zealand or Argentina.
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