DSG Newsletter Nº31 ISSN September, The One Plan Approach and Regional Collection Planning by the EAZA Deer TAG.

CO-CHAIR DSG Dr. Susana González Biodiversidad & Genética IIBCE Av. Italia 3318 Montevideo, Uruguay CO-CHAIR DSG Dr. Noam Werner General Curator EAZA Deer TAG Chair The Tisch Family Zoological Gardens

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CO-CHAIR DSG Dr. Susana González Biodiversidad & Genética IIBCE Av. Italia 3318 Montevideo, Uruguay CO-CHAIR DSG Dr. Noam Werner General Curator EAZA Deer TAG Chair The Tisch Family Zoological Gardens in Jerusalem The Gottesman Family Israel Aquarium DSG VICE-CHAIR Dr. José Maurício Barbanti Duarte NUPECCE UNESP-Brazil RED LIST AUTHORITY NEW WORLD Dr. Mariano Gimenez- Dixon RED LIST AUTHORITY OLD WORLD SPECIES Dr. Sarah Brooks NEWSLETTER EDITOR Dr.. Patricia Black & Dr. Susana González EDITORIAL BOARD Dr. Patricia Black Dr. John Jackson Dr. Susana González Dr. Noam Werner Editorial 2 Articles Reintroduction of Indian mouse deer (Moschiola indica) at Amrabad Tiger Reserve and Kinnerasani Wildlife Sanctuary, Telangana, India. Mushkam Sandeep, Buddi Laxmi Narayana, Shivani Dogra., and N. Kshitija 3 Updates on the vulnerable marsh deer (Blastocerus dichotomus): new occurrence in wetlands of Southern Amazonia, Brazil. Julio C. Dalponte and Alexandre Faria 9 The One Plan Approach and Regional Collection Planning by the EAZA Deer TAG. Noam Werner 18 News News from the 9th International Deer Biology Congress. David Hewitt, Randy De Young, Jim Heffelfinger, and Kurt Vercauteren 26 Reintroduction of Persian fallow deer in Israel. Patricia Black 27 New observatories built for observing Corsican red deer. Patricia Black 28 First Phillipine spotted deer of year born. Patricia Black 29 Chilean huemul affected by life threatening foot disease Patricia Black 30 Climate change produces population crash in Arctic caribou. Patricia Black 32 Obituary Dr. Colin Groves Bernard Wood 33 Layout by: Marcelo Giloca Biodiversidad & Genética-IIBCE Av. Italia 3318 Montevideo, Uruguay 1 Editorial Dear DSG members, I would like to start this issue of our DSG Newsletter with a special thank you to my colleague, Dr. Bill McShea, who served as the Co-Chair of the IUCN/SSC Deer Specialist Group for nearly a decade. We worked closely together, and I found in Bill a wonderful, very collaborative and helpful partner who improved significantly the deer conservation network in Asia. I am going to miss him but I am sure that he will continue to be a part of our network as a qualified member, sharing his vast expertise and knowledge of Old-World deer species. After a process of open applications for the Co-Chair position, I am pleased to inform you that Dr. Jon Paul Rodríguez has appointed Dr. Noam Werner as the new Co-Chair who will be responsible for Old- World deer species. Noam is based at the Tisch Family Zoological Gardens (the Biblical Zoo) in Jerusalem, Israel. Noam has large experience and has been involved with deer conservation for many years. He is deeply involved with the re-introduction of the Mesopotamian fallow deer to the Jerusalem Hills, both in-situ and ex-situ, and he is also been serving as the Chair of the EAZA (European Association of Zoo and Aquaria) Deer Taxon Advisory Group (TAG). Noam has been leading several deer-research projects, overseeing the coordination of captive population management programs, developing regional collection plans, collaborating with in-situ projects, and providing expertise for various deer conservation projects. I am very happy that we will be working in collaboration to improve and reinforce the DSG network, to integrate deer biology knowledge, and to be more effective in conservation and management guidelines. We wish to acknowledge our supporting agencies: to Susana González Comisión Sectorial de Investigación Cientifica (CSIC-UdelaR), and the Women in Science Award of the L Oreal Foundation- UNESCO-MEC in Uruguay for her research and contribution to the advancement of scientific knowledge on Neotropical deer species. We want to acknowledge to all who contribute in this edition, also we extent our thanks to all of you for being part of the DSG and we invite all to submit articles to the next issue to Dr. Patricia Black Our best wishes, Susana and Noam Susana González and Noam Werner Co-Chairs, Deer Specialist Group. 2 Reintroduction of Indian mouse deer (Moschiola indica) at Amrabad Tiger Reserve and Kinnerasani Wildlife Sanctuary, Telangana, India. Mushkam Sandeep 1 (Biologist), Buddi Laxmi Narayana 2 (Biologist), Shivani Dogra., IFS and N. Kshitija., IFS Nehru Zoological Park, Hyderabad , Telangana, India. 1, 2 The Telangana State Forest Department, Central Zoo Authority (CZA), Nehru Zoological Park (NZP), and CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) have joined hands to conduct the first ever planned reintroduction of the Indian spotted chevrotain (Moschiola indica), also known as the Indian mouse deer. On 17 th July 2018, the first batch of eight individuals was released into the wild, and the total no of eight batches released into the wild is 72 individuals.this follows more than seven years of conservation breeding of the elusive species at a dedicated facility in the premises of NZP, Hyderabad, which increased the captive mouse deer population up to around 232 individuals by March, Release is done after several months of preparation at the newly built soft-release facility in Amrabad Tiger Reserve ( N; E) and Kinnerasani Wildlife Sanctuary ( N; E). Zoos in India have transformed in the last three decades and have performed several roles; among them, the focus on conservation breeding of endangered species with scientific inputs is worthy of highlight. The Indian mouse deer conservationbreeding programme is a notable example of this aspect of Indian zoos. It has led to the documentation of unique breeding behaviours of the species hitherto unknown in other ruminant species. With the successful establishment of a captive population, a reintroduction programme was the logical outcome. So, in accordance with IUCN s guidelines for 3 reintroduction, an action plan for the reintroduction programme was prepared using inputs about its behaviour and breeding biology revealed from observations made during the conservationbreeding programme. A suitable area for release was identified in the Mannanur Range of Amrabad Tiger Reserve, and Chatakonda range of Kinnerasani Wildlife Sanctuary Telangana - a large expanse of deciduous forest with dense understorey, a critical requirement for mouse deer survival. A soft-release facility was set up with three compartments of varying dimensions and composition to reflect the staggered conditioning regime recommended for the release of captive-bred mouse deer into the wild. The three stages,viz. Stabilization, Acclimatization and Pre-Release, could be simultaneously occupied by at most 8 mouse deer individuals each. Each batch would spend at least two weeks in each stage before proceeding to the next stage. The reintroduction programme includes continuous monitoring of the released population through camera trap surveys and molecular identificationin order to evaluate the establishment success and to inform future decisions. Mouse deer belong to the basal ruminant family Tragulidae. Since tragulids occupy important ecological roles as seed dispersers by consuming fallen fruits and as prey for several small and large carnivores like martens, wild dogs, leopards, tigers and large birds of prey, their presence in native forest ecosystems is essential. Under the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 the mouse deer is accorded Schedule-I status, giving it maximum protection. Historically, it was present throughout the deciduous and evergreen forests of the Indian subcontinent, but extensivehabitat degradation, especially of the forest understorey, and hunting for bush meat, has significantly reduced its population size with local extinctions reported from several places. Despite its widespread distribution, its inherently low population density makes it highly vulnerable to the aforementioned threats. However, recent measures have reduced the threat of hunting in many areas making them conducive for reestablishment of the species. Reintroductions of locally extinct chevrotain into the wild are not only recommended but are a necessary condition for the long-term survival of the species. Moreover, reintroductions with the aim of supplementing small populations may help in preventing further population decline and local 4 extinctions. The mouse deer reintroduction programme is also expected to produce a wealth of information about its behaviour in the wild, of which little is known, and the factors affecting its successful establishment. Furthermore, the program would go a long way in realizing the full potential of Indian zoos as agencies of wildlife conservation. Figure 1. A view of mouse deer at conservation breeding programme, Nehru Zoological Park, Hyderabad. Photo Credits: Buddi Laxmi Narayana 5 Figure 2. a) An enriched mouse deer enclosure under the conservation breeding programme initiated by Nehru Zoological Park, Hyderabad; b) A pair of mouse deer using an artificial shelter in the enclosure. Photo Credits: Mushkam Sandeep Figure 3. a) A mouse deer drinking water in the stabilization stage of the reintroduction programme; b) Camera trap image of one of the eight mouse deer which were released into the wild. 6 Figure 4. Design for the soft-release facility showing the three compartments and the features of each stage. Figure 5. Illustration showing the camera trapping design. Left: Concentric circles C1-C10 with spokes S1-S6 and the soft-release facility in the centre; Centre: A sector of the outermost circle; Right: Distances from the exit door to each circle r1-r10. 7 Figure 6. Map showing the soft-release facility in Amrabad Tiger Reserve ( N; E) and Kinnerasani Wildlife Sanctuary ( N; E), Telangana, India. 8 Updates on the vulnerable marsh deer (Blastocerus dichotomus): new occurrence in wetlands of Southern Amazonia, Brazil Julio C. Dalponte¹ and Alexandre Faria² ¹ Instituto de Ciências Naturais, Humanas e Sociais, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso, Av. Alexandre Ferronato, 1200, Sinop, Mato Grosso , Sinop, Brasil ² Instituto de Ciências da Saúde, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso, Sinop, Brasil. Corresponding author: Abstract The marsh deer Blastocerus dichotomus is the largest Latin American species of deer, and one of the few examples for this group known to be restricted to wetlands. Historically, marsh deer occurred in several types of wetlands throughout South America. In Brazil, the highest concentrations occur in the Pantanal, with remaining populations distributed in the wetlands of the Bananal Island, Araguaia River, Guaporé River and remaining Paraná River floodplains. There are no recent records of its occurrence in the floodplains of the major rivers in Southern Amazon, especially Mato Grosso State. In this study, we recorded by camera-traps two marsh deer individuals and sighted one additional deer in the floodplain system of the Teles Pires River, mid-northern Mato Grosso, Brazil. These new records are located in an extensive region with no recent records for this species and indicate the persistence of a residual marsh deer population in the Teles Pires River floodplain system. The high concentration of environmental threats in these wetlands highlight the urgency of performing population assessments and identification of suitable habitat for marsh deer in this region, which would serve as a baseline tool for establishing corridors and promoting connectivity between the wetland patches along this riverplain system. Key words: Marsh deer, distribution, Southern Amazon, Brazil Resumen El ciervo de los pantanos Blastocerus dichotomus es la especie de venado más grande de América Latina, y una de las pocas especies de venado conocidas por estar restringidas a los humedales. En Brasil, las concentraciones más grandes se encuentran en el Pantanal brasileño, con las poblaciones 9 restantes distribuidas en los humedales de la llha do Bananal, el río Araguaia, el río Guaporé y las tierras bajas del río Paraná. No hay registros recientes de su ocurrencia en las planicies aluviales de los grandes ríos de la Amazonía sur, entre los rios Juruena e Xingu, en el estado de Mato Grosso. En el presente estudio se registraron dos individuos con cámaras trampaen el sistema de llanuras de inundación del río Teles Pires, en el Rancho Paranatinga, municipio de Sorriso, en la mitad norte de Mato Grosso. Estos nuevos registros son importantes porque están ubicados en una extensa región sin datos actualizados en la parte norte del área de distribución histórica de la especie. El presente registro indica la persistencia de una población residual de ciervo de los pantanosen el sistema de humedales del río Teles Pires. Las amenazas ambientales en estos humedales señalan la urgenciade efectuar la evaluación de la población y la identificación de hábitats adecuados para los ciervos en la región como base para establecer corredores y promover la conectividad entre los parches de humedales a lo largo de este río. Palabras clave: Ciervo de los pantanos, distribución, Amazonia meridional Introduction The marsh deer Blastocerus dichotomus is the largest Latin American species of deer, and one of the few species of deer known to be restricted to wetlands (Mauro et al. 1998). The species has morphological adaptations such as interdigital membranes, elongated hooves and relatively long limbs that enable it to move through these marshy and flooded shallow water landscapes (Tomas et al. 1997, Tomas et al. 2001). Historically, marsh deer occurred in several types of wetland throughout Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, and Peru (Duarte et al. 2016, Duarte et al. 2018). In Uruguay the species has probably been extinct since 1958 (González 1994), although oral records obtained in the Rocha department mention their presence until the early 1980s (Prigioni et al., 2019). In Brazil its original range covered the states of Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, and Goiás, the southeast of Rondônia and the south of Pará and Tocantins, the south of Piauí and Maranhão, the west of Bahia and, in the region of the São Francisco River, the west of Minas Gerais and São Paulo, the extreme west of Paraná and the south and southwest of Rio Grande do Sul (Tomas et al., 1997). 10 The marsh deer s highest concentrations occur in the Brazilian Pantanal (states of Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul), which represent 88% of the total population of the species in Brazil (Duarte et al. 2018). The remaining 12% is distributed in the wetlands of the Bananal Island, the Araguaia River (states of Mato Grosso and Tocantins), from the Guaporé River (Rondônia state) to the remaining floodplains of the Paraná River, in the states of Mato Grosso do Sul, Paraná and São Paulo (Tomas et al. 1997, Duarte et al. 2018). Currently, the Brazilian marsh deer population is estimated at 25,000 mature individuals (Duarte et al. 2018). In these regions, marsh deer survive at extreme risk in many floodplains of the great rivers and their tributaries within the limits of their historical distribution, constituting, for the most part, relictual populations (Pinder & Seal 1995), and there is the immediate possibility of local extinctions. The species is classified in the category Vulnerable - VU , especially due to loss of habitat from hydroelectric dams (Duarte et al. 2018). Hydropower dams resulted in the flooding of critical marsh deer habitat (Pinder 1995, Tiepolo et al. 2004), and contributed to a decrease in the survival rates of marsh deer (Wemmer 1998). Although the marsh deer distribution originally included the Southern Amazonian forest (Cabrera 1961, Jungius 1976), there are no recent records of its occurrence in the floodplains of the great rivers of this region. In this context, especially in Mato Grosso state, there is a lack of information about the distribution of marsh deer. (Duarte et al., 2012, Duarte et al., 2018). Here, we present new reports of marsh deer occurrence in a poorly known region for this species in Mato Grosso state, Brazil. Our results confirm the existence of a residual marsh deer population in the floodplain system of the upper Teles Pires River. Material and Methods Study area 11 The recorded individuals were detected during a pilot mammal survey conducted in a private reserved area (Reserva Legal) of the Paranatinga Ranch, in the municipality of Sorriso, mid- northern Mato Grosso state ( , 01 S; , 01 W). The area where the records were taken (Figure 1), is part of the floodplain system of the upper course of the Teles Pires River. It is a mosaic of depositional environments, locally presenting oxbow lakes and the deposition of a series of undulating 'ridges' and 'scrolls'. The area is part of a system of floodplains bordering the meandering section of the river subject to periodic floods. Figure 1. Map showing the historic distribution of Blastocerus dichotomus (adapted from Duarte et al. 2016), with the new occurrence (black circle). The smaller polygons within the hypothetical original occurrence area indicate the current distribution of the species. The landscape in this locality is a mosaic of terrains, some of which flood and others which do not flood. The latter are higher elongated strips and pockets of alluvial forest at the height of ca. 340 m, containing seasonal forests, including the bacaba palm (Oenocarpus bacaba) and the inajá palm (Maximiliana maripa). Large areas of shrubby savannah occur in raised areas (ca. 313 m), with grasslands at the lower levels (ca. 306 m). These grasslands were flooded during part of the 12 observation period, March 2019 (Figure 2A), with abundant aquatic macrophytes, which are interspersed with dense and low savanna patches on slightly higher terrain. Flooded grasslands connect with smaller sparse patches of soaked grass on the wooded savannah (Figure 2B). (Mauritiella aculeata), pimenteira (Licania parvifolia), and murici (Byrsonima sp.) (Figure2B). Figure 2. (A) Flooded savanna; (B) Patch of soaked grass on the wooded savannah, both typical habitat of marsh deer in the study area; (C) Female marsh deer recorded by camera trap; (D) Female marsh deer recorded by sighting (Photo by G. Wolf.); (E) Male marsh deer recorded by camera trap; (F) Marsh deer tracks in mud. 13 The flooding grasslands, where the marsh deer were recorded, are locally characterized by an herbaceous component, dominated by native grasses, and shrubs, marked by the presence of buritirana clumps The study area was initially selected based on prior information of marsh deer occurrence. Subsequently, a rapid field survey confirmed the presence of the species through fresh tracks (Figure 2F). Based on this evidence, three Bushnell Trophy Cam HD traps were installed near the location of the footprints. Results and Discussion During the first period of camera trapping, the cameras remained active 24 hours a day for 14 consecutive days (March 9-23, 2029), totaling an effort of 1008 hours. As results of the camera trapping survey, we obtained 20 pictures of Brazilian tapir, Tapirus terrestris, three of red brocket deer, Mazama americana, and five of marsh deer. In the latter case, all were apparently from the same female individual (Figure 2C). These records of marsh deer were obtained in the daytime period, in an isolated semi-flooded grassland patch in a woody savanna matrix. This 300 x 70 m patch connects with more extensive open areas through corridors of herbaceous vegetation or shallow brush. The finding of tracks elsewhere in the area indicates that the animals use denser savanna habitats and not just the grasslands. During the second period of camera trapping (June 23-29, 2019), totaling an effort of 144 hours, we obtained 10 images of tapir, one of jaguar, Panthera onca, and three images of male marsh deer (Figure 2E) at the coordinates '42.4 S, 55 41' 40.7 . These records were obtained from a 2000 x 1000 m patch of shrubby savannah-grassland habitat, not flooded during the sampling period. The records of marsh deer were obtained during the day (two pictures), and
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