Southern pudu

The Southern pudu (Pudu puda), also known as the Chilean pudu, is one of the world’s smallest deer species, native to South America. Here’s a description of the Southern pudu and its distribution:

Description of the Southern Pudu:

  • Size: Southern pudus are tiny deer, with adults typically standing only about 32 to 44 centimeters (12.5 to 17.5 inches) tall at the shoulder. They weigh between 3 to 6 kilograms (7 to 13 pounds), making them one of the smallest deer species in the world.
  • Appearance: Southern pudus have short, stocky bodies with long legs relative to their size. They have reddish-brown fur with white spots on their back and sides, providing camouflage in their forest habitat. Male pudus have small, simple antlers that are shed and regrown annually.
  • Habitat: Southern pudus are found in dense, temperate rainforests and montane forests of southern Chile and southwestern Argentina. They prefer areas with dense vegetation and ample cover, where they can hide from predators and browse on vegetation such as leaves, twigs, and fruit.
  • Behavior: Southern pudus are primarily solitary and secretive animals, most active during the early morning and late evening hours. They are excellent jumpers and swimmers, using their agility to navigate through dense vegetation and escape from predators.
  • Conservation Status: Southern pudus are classified as “Vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) due to habitat loss, fragmentation, and hunting pressure. Conservation efforts are underway to protect their forest habitat and prevent further population decline.

Distribution by County: Southern pudus are primarily found in the temperate rainforests and montane forests of southern Chile and southwestern Argentina. Specific county-level data may vary, but they are generally associated with regions in southern Chile, including the Los Lagos, Los Ríos, and Aysén regions, as well as parts of the Argentine provinces of Neuquén and Río Negro. Within these areas, Southern pudus inhabit remote and inaccessible forested areas, where they are relatively undisturbed by human activities.

Southern pudu in Zoos

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