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Cervus unicolor

Sambar Deer at Kowen, ACT

Cervus unicolor at Kowen, ACT - 18 May 2022
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Identification history

Cervus unicolor 18 May 2022 DonFletcher
Unidentified 18 May 2022 MPennay

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User's notes

Young deer roadkill on Sutton Rd just near Majura Firing Range Kowen Forest


   18 May 2022
Thanks Michael. Others might be able, but I cant ID this animal with reasonable confidence from features visible. Good ID features for deer (3 local species and about 8 nationally) are: the pattern of dark and light markings on the rump, and the pattern and shape of antlers, if present. Is that the remains of a right antler that I can see? In that location it is most likely to be a Fallow Deer (Dama dama). (Local Fallow lack spots.) Other possibilities are Sambar (Cervus unicolor) and Red Deer (Cervus elaphas). Sambar have spread away from their 'normal' habitat far more than most people realise and are often present in an area for years before they are first seen by normal observers. Red Deer are present where they have been released or escaped from farms.
   18 May 2022
Fallow Deer and Sambar are both in Majura Nature Reserve and almost certain to be in Majura Training Area (formerly called Field Firing Range)
   18 May 2022
should be remains of a RIGHT antler
MPennay wrote:
   18 May 2022
Yes only a small antler, it's definitely a juvenile. My hunch from size and fur texture was young Sambar buck. I can take additional photos if there are any features in particular that help. I was trying not to be too gruesome in the photos
MPennay wrote:
   18 May 2022
For some reason the location incorrectly loaded have modified the map to approx location
   18 May 2022
I think the image quality when you zoom in is lost in the CNM process. I was far from convinced that it was an antler until you confirmed it, but now that you have said that, I see the antler has a Sambar style to it, so lets go with Sambar. I could not judge the size.
Zoological trumps gruesome. The world would be a bit more sensible if people learned to relax more instead of calling out gruesome things. So we should model good behaviour by being relaxed about them.
natureguy wrote:
   18 May 2022
I have seen Sambar alive in Kowen and also dead as roadkill on Sutton Rd in the same area before. Sometimes you can hear the deer "screaming", which is a very peculiar and eerie sound. Whilst they are present and probably not uncommon, they are very secretive and rarely seen

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Location information

Species information

  • Not Sensitive
  • Exotic
  • Non-Invasive

Sighting information

  • 1 - 3 Abundance
  • 18 May 2022 09:49 AM Recorded on
  • MPennay Recorded by

Additional information

  • Male Gender
  • Deceased Animal health

Record quality

  • Images or audio
  • More than one media file
  • Confirmed by an expert moderator
  • Nearby sighting(s) of same species
  • GPS evidence of location
  • Description
  • Additional attributes
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