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Siberian roe deer: description, photo

In different languages, the name of Siberian roe deer sounds in its own way: in English - Siberian Roe Deer, in German - Sibirischen Rehwild, in Spanish - Corzo Siberiano, in French - Chevreuil de Sibérie. Often it is called the eastern one. But few people know that in the family of these beauties distinguish and other types of roe deer. In total there are five of them, the SCI book of records with the purpose of correct accounting unites them in two: Siberian roe (three variants - pygargus, caucasicus, tianschanicus) and Chinese. There are two subspecies of the latter - bedfordi and mela-notis. More details we will dwell on the first variant, the most typical representative of this specimen of artiodactyls.

Siberian roe deer

Capreolus pygargus is a small, elegant deer of a reddish-brown color. Such color to the animal is characteristic during the summer. Then the roe deer becomes gray, pale brown or even black - in the winter season. The tail is quite small, and in the cold it is completely invisible or completely absent. Males are larger than females, and have short horns, usually with three dots. The canopy is kept from October to January. A new pair, which begins to grow rapidly, immediately becomes covered with velvet of the skin, which delivers blood to the growing horns.

You can see these animals in the northeastern regions of Asia: in Mongolia, on the Korean Peninsula, in the areas of Eastern Tibet, Northeast China, and in the Tien Shan. A large population of representatives of this species of deer lives in the southern part of the West Siberian Plain. In particular, the most extensive roe deer habitat in the Kurgan region is located. The nature of these places can not be better suited for its existence and reproduction.

Biology and breeding season

Siberian roe deer can be active for 24 hours, but the main peaks of its speed are at dawn and at dusk. You can meet animals either singly or in small mixed groups. In winter, as a rule, they form large groups, since it is easier to extract food together. The roe deer's diet is wide enough, its variety depends on the season and includes leaves of shrubs, trees, weeds, acorns, mushrooms, coniferous shoots and ferns. Season of reproduction, or "rut", occurs from the middle of July to August. During this time the males become very aggressive and actively protect their territory. Battles between males are frequent. They represent a clash of two males that block each other with horns, crush and twist them. Such battles can lead to serious injuries and even death.

Having won, the winner can then mate with the female. Courting involves winning the pursuit of a female individual for some time until she is ready to mate. Although the latter occurs in August, a fertilized egg does not begin to develop until late December or early January. Roe deer are born from one to three young, more often in May-June. Very often twins are obtained. After the birth of their offspring, roe deer is left alone for six weeks. Their invisible color helps to disguise individuals for a while, but mortality from predators is still high. At the end of this time, the cubs stay with their mother. Both sexes diverge, but females tend to stay closer to the younger generation than males.

Next of kin

The nearest relative of the Siberian species of these animals is European roe deer. Their representatives are similar in lifestyle, habitat, diet and other areas of life. The only thing, they have only small differences in appearance. The Siberian species has a more massive body. Summer hair is brighter, color is closer to the red. Winter "coat" is much thicker and rougher. The horns are pointed clearly upwards, in the form of the letter V, and never touch each other.

It is noteworthy that the roe deer is a wild animal in Europe, which is allowed to hunt (though not everywhere). The horns of this fine fauna representative are not inferior to other European trophies in value. As a rule, it is customary to start the hunting season in early May, until the vegetation has become thick, and small roe deer can be easily noticed in it.

European roe deer is widespread in England, with the exception of its eastern part (Kent and Midland). It is also often found in Scotland, less in Wales. Dwells throughout Europe and Asia Minor, except for the islands of Corsica and Sardinia. There is no such representative of deer in Lebanon, Israel, Northern Ireland and Eastern Europe. Their distribution has been reduced, the range is fragmented due to hunting and other human intervention. This happened in the late XIX - early XX centuries.

Siberian roe deer. Description

Externally Capreolus pygargus is a small deer with a long neck, without mane, with relatively large ears (12-14 cm). The tail is in an embryonic state (2-3 cm) and can not grow longer. In winter, the color varies from grayish brown to dark brown, in summer from reddish to reddish-brown. At males enough dense skin on a head, a neck and a forward part of a trunk. Caudal patch absent or little pronounced. In winter time it is noticeable more strongly. The top of the head is gray or brown, sometimes dark brown. Roe deer moult twice a year, in spring and autumn. Children of this species look spotty.

Horns are present, and annually in October-November roe deer is discarded. The new ones grow almost immediately. In boys, they are slightly more than girls. In addition, they have a tubercular form in them. Basal rosettes clearly defined.

The Siberian roe deer, whose photo shows it well, has narrow and short, well developed lateral muscles.

Analysis of 11 different groups of roe deer showed that the average length of the animal is 107-125 cm, the height in the shoulders is 66-83 cm, the body weight is 22-30 kg, the maximum length of the skull is 191-212 mm, and its width is 84-91 Mm. In itself, it is small and somewhat elongated. Lacrimal bones are shorter than the orbital diameter of the cavity. The preorbital glands are in an embryonic state, and the drum bullae are small. The anterior ends of the nasal bones bifurcate when the maxillary bones are pressed. Orbits of medium size. The maxillary bones are comparatively high.


Speaking about the habitat, roe deer prefer forest-steppe and small islets of forests among arable lands. They like tall grass, meadows with bushes. In addition, they like islands of land left after deforestation, which serve for reclamation. They also adore high grass and meadows with shrubs.

Siberian roe deer occupy a wide range of habitats, including deciduous, mixed or coniferous forests, marshes, pastures, arable land in suburban areas with large gardens. And you probably already guessed who prefers landscapes with a mosaic of forests and is well adapted to modern agricultural landscapes? Correctly - Siberian roe deer. Photos in the article perfectly show it.


Roe deer consume about a thousand different plant species within its habitat. Of these, 25% are woody crops, 54% are herbaceous dicotyledons, monocotyledons - somewhere around 16%. They can eat needles of coniferous trees, but this usually occurs only in winter, when other sources of food are missing. Roe deer prefer energy-rich foods that are soft and contain large amounts of water. Because of the small size of the stomach and the rapid process of digestion, their body requires frequent meals. They usually have from five to eleven separate feeding periods per day. Can be fed at hourly intervals provided that food is available to them in optimum availability.

Types of food vary depending on the season and the habits of animals. Nevertheless, one study showed that the differences in the composition of the diet are more closely correlated with the habitat than with the season. Fodder stocks decline in winter, and the diet becomes less diverse. Consequently, the metabolic rate and food intake are reduced. In the spring, on the contrary, energy needs and the process of digestion increase. Concentrates in the form of seeds or fruits they consume in the autumn.

Siberian roe deer eat absolutely all kinds of plants: grasses, wildflowers, blackberries, buds and leaves of trees, bushes, likes mushrooms and various agricultural crops.

Life expectancy of roe

The maximum age that was recorded is 17 years and 5 months in captivity. It follows from observations that young females (90%) survive better in the wild. In the wild, the average life expectancy of these animals is up to 15 years. It should be noted that implantation can be from 2 to 5.5 months. So the total time of pregnancy can last from 122 to 305 days.

Reproduction of offspring

Male roe deer reach sexual maturity by the end of the first year of life. Nevertheless, they can not begin breeding until the third year of life. Physiologically capable of reproduction, they become from March to October. But basically this process lasts from June to August. Only a few individuals do this sooner or later.

Female roe deer are capable of reproducing the offspring when they reach the age of 14 months. The duration of estrus in them, as a rule, is 36 hours.

Pregnancy and cubs

Siberian roe deer belongs to ungulates, therefore it has a latent period of pregnancy, and, consequently, its reproductive cycle is different even from closely related species. Implantation of the embryo usually occurs in January. The fertilized egg penetrates into the uterus where it divides. Then follow 4-5 months of minimal activity. The gestation period is between 264 and 318 days. The deer are born between April and July. At one time, two and three babies may appear. They weigh 1-1.7 kg, have their own distinctive color.

The young are practically helpless during the first few days of life and easily fall prey to predators. Feeding by mother's milk occurs until August and completely stops in early autumn, but sometimes lasts until December. After weaning from the mother, the deer are completely transformed into vegetable food. They grow rapidly, two weeks after birth, their growth exceeds the body weight by half.

Status "under guard"

Despite the rather extensive habitat and the excessive number of roe deer in some countries, up to the negative consequences (frequent accidents), there is Siberian roe deer in the Red Book. The grounds for such a ban were: minor remnants of the population, as well as the threat of poaching and predation. Rare representatives of this species of Siberian animals are under serious threat of extinction due to a reduction in the habitat, weather conditions and the consequences of human activities. Roe deer are widely protected in the UK. Some methods of killing or capturing deer are prohibited in accordance with Annex IV of the Berne Convention, and are prosecuted by law. In addition to the above, it is known that on the territory of the Russian Federation, measures are also being taken to combat poaching and rational management of hunting facilities in order to restore and increase the number of Siberian roe deer. This beautiful representative of the animal world is listed in the Red Data Books of Tomsk Oblast and the Krasnoyarsk Territory. The penalty for the roe deer imposed on the offender varies depending on the severity of the damage caused, is determined individually and in accordance with the law. It can be up to five times the minimum wage.

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