Endangered deer spotted in central Vietnam

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Photo traps have captured images of an endangered deer in a reserve in the north-central province of Thua Thien-Hue, online newspaper Dan Tri reported.

The Thua Thien-Hue Saola Reserve, built to protect the sao la, a critically endangered mammal, and its natural habitat, said Wednesday a giant muntjac (Muntiacus vuquangensis) was recently spotted in photographs.

Le Ngoc Tuan, the director of the reserve, said the NGO World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is installing more photo traps in the hope of getting more images of the animal.

The giant muntjac is the largest muntjac species and was discovered in 1994 in Vu Quang in Ha Tinh Province of Vietnam and in central Laos.

It is also found in parts of eastern Cambodia and the Truong Son Mountain range in Vietnam.

The giant muntjac is commonly found in evergreen forests, weighs 30-50 kg, has a red brown coat, and is an even-toed ungulate. Closely related to the Indian muntjac, it is a prey animal for tigers and leopards.

Slash and burn agriculture and hunting have caused it to become an endangered species.

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