The national animal of Ireland is the red deer. The scientific name of red deer is Cervus elaphus. The red deer are vastly found in Europe, Asia and Central Asia.
Red Deer Facts:
- In summer the red deer own a reddish brown coat while towards winter it turns gray. Immature have spots while there is no spot on adults.
- The male red deer (stags) weigh up to 190 KG and can be 130 cm high. Females, on the other hand, are shorter weigh around 70-120 KG and are 100 cm high.
- Red deer love to live in woody areas also heath-lands for both food and cover.
- The diet is comprised of mostly shrubs, bushes, ground-hugging plants, heather, bilberry and in the case of lack of food they also consume on the branches of trees.
- Red deer can become sexually mature within 2 years while the overall lifespan is up to 18 years in wild and astonishingly lesser in captivity which is around 15 years.
- The breeding seasons starts from the midst of September and lasts till November.
- The gestation period is around 233 days.
- During the rut, the Stags turn very violent and aggressive, produce some distinctive and throaty roaring noise.
Why is red deer the national animal of Ireland ?
Red deer have inhabited Ireland since 10,000 B.C. However, a hefty increase in hunting, commercialization, and deforestation made many herds of red deer went extinct.
Now these beautiful deer have their preservation area in Killarney National Park. The country’s wild life department in collaboration with some others working to preserve the native deer species of the country. So it is evident now that why it is has been chosen as the national animal of the country.