The leaf Muntjac ( leaf deer) or Putao Muntjac (Muntiacus putaoensis) is a small species of deer. It was discovered in 1997 by biologist Alan during his field study in the isolated in Myanmar, India. Local hunters knew of the species and called it the leaf deer because its body could be completely wrapped by a single large leaf.
An adult leaf deer stands at just 20 inches (50 cm) high at the shoulder and weighs less than 25 pounds (11 kg). They are light brown. Males have unbranched antlers that are about 1 inch (2.5 cm) in height. Other than this, the male and female deer are identical. This species is unusual among other deer because their offspring do not bear any spots. It also differs from other muntjacs because both the male and female have pronounced canine tusks.
Muntjacs by nature are shy and extremely cautious. They approach anything new very slowly. As one foot goes in front of the other it appears they are not moving. Once they are familiar with the home, their territory both inside and out, they become relaxed.
The species is known only from a limited area in northern Myanmar and adjacent India. The known range is in the mountain region between the Mali Kha and Mai Kha rivers of the Hakakaborazi National Park and adjacent Naungmung area of northern Kachin state, Myanmar, south within Kachin state through the Hponkhanrazi range to the Bumpha Bum range (also known as Sumprabum), based on camera-trap data.
Muntjac deer can mate at any time of the year, there is no particular season ,starts in the spring and last about 3-4 months.
There was no consistent information on the breeding and gestation periods of the various Muntjac. The Leaf Muntjac have one baby a year and the mating season is 3 – 4 months in the spring. The males can become slightly aggressive at this time with other male deer or anything that enters their territory. They can be housed separately if you don’t want babies or you can just separate them out during the day so you can play with the little girls.
Most forest foods will be eaten; fresh tree shoots, leaves, nuts, berries, acorns and fungi are all part of a Muntjac’s diet. They will also strip bark from the bottom of trees. The deer typically feed at 3 – 4 hourly intervals, consuming fresh food quickly and then retreating into the undergrowth to chew the cud.
Muntjac deer originate from China and were introduced into Britain in the late 19th century. London zoo and Woburn Park in Bedfordshire were their initial place of captivity but escaped Muntjacs from Woburn have led to the British population.
The Muntjac deer of the New Forest are very few in number and extremely hard to find, not only because of their tiny size but mainly because of their preference to staying in densely wooded areas.
Despite their size, they are one of the most audible deer and can bark loudly for up to 20 minutes in an effort to find a mate.
PRICE & AVAILABILITY
The Muntjac deer today are not readily available as pets but with a little perseverance you can certainly find one. There are deer magazines and exotic pet magazines which advertise the Muntjac for sale. You can usually find them for sale on the internet by looking for exotic pets for sale or Muntjac deer for sale.
The price for a male is considerably less than a female. The male usually costs about $500 -$700. The females start around $700 and have gone as high as $1800 several years ago. They are becoming easier to obtain as more are being bred and the price is coming down.