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Veteran's Appreciation Week
|Below is some information about the residents of the Asian realm at The Montgomery Zoo. Come visit us to find out more.
The chital or cheetal (Axis axis), also known as chital deer, spotted deer or axis deer is a deer which commonly inhabits wooded regions of Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and in small numbers in Pakistan. It is the most common deer species in Indian forests. It has been introduced to Queensland, Australia, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Point Reyes National Seashore near San Francisco, California, Texas and Florida as well as Hawaii in the United States and to the Veliki Brijun Island in the Brijuni Archipelago of the Istrian Peninsula in Croatia.
The chital's coat is reddish fawn, marked with white spots, and its underparts are white. Its antlers, which it sheds annually, are usually three-pronged and curve in a lyre shape and may extend to 75 cm (2.5 ft). It stands about 90 cm (3 ft) tall at the shoulder and masses about 85 kg (187 lb). Its lifespan is around 20–30 years.
The spotted deer is found in large numbers in dense deciduous or semi-evergreen jungles and open grasslands. The highest numbers of Chital are found in the jungles of India where they feed upon tall grass and shrubs. Chital has been also spotted in Phibsoo wildlife Sanctuary in Bhutan which is the only remaining natural Sal (Shorea robusta) forests in the country. They do not occur at higher elevation forests where they are usually replaced by other species such as the Sambar deer. They also prefer heavy forest cover for shade and are intolerant of direct sunlight.
The Banteng (Bos javanicus), also known as Tembadau, is a species of wild cattle found in Southeast Asia. Banteng have been domesticated in several places in Southeast Asia, and there are around 1.5 million domestic banteng, which are called Bali cattle. These animals are used as working animals, and for their meat. Bali cattle have also been introduced to Northern Australia, where they have established stable feral populations.
The banteng is similar in size to domestic cattle, being 1.55 to 1.65 m (61 to 65 in) tall at the shoulder, and weighing 600 to 800 kg (1,300 to 1,800 lb). It exhibits sexual dimorphism, allowing the sexes to be readily distinguished by color and size. In mature males, the short-haired coat is blue-black or dark chestnut in color, while in females and young it is chestnut, with a dark dorsal stripe. Both males and females have white stockings on their lower legs, a white rump, a white muzzle, and white spots above the eyes. The build is similar to that of domestic cattle, but with a rather slender neck and small head, and a ridge on the back above the shoulders. The horns of females are short and tightly curved, pointing inward at the tips, and those of males arc upwards, growing 60 to 75 cm (24 to 30 in) long, and being connected by a horn-like bald patch on the forehead.
Banteng live in sparse forest where they feed on grasses, bamboo, fruit, leaves and young branches. The banteng is generally active both night and day, but in places where humans are common they adopt a nocturnal schedule. Banteng tend to gather in herds of two to thirty members.
The Banteng can be found in the Asian hoofstock collection at the Montgomery Zoo.
The Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) is a large waterbird which breeds mainly in the southeast and southwest regions of Australia.
The Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis) is also called Greater One-horned Rhinoceros and Asian One-horned Rhinoceros and belongs to the Rhinocerotidae family. Listed as a vulnerable species, the large mammal is primarily found in parts of north-eastern India and in protected areas in the Terai of Nepal, where populations are confined to the riverine grasslands in the foothills of the Himalayas. Weighing between 2260 kg and 3000 kg, it is the fourth largest land animal and has a single horn, which measures 20 cm to 57 cm in length.
The Reeves' Muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi) is a muntjac species found widely in southeastern China (Gansu to Yunnan) and in Taiwan. They have also been introduced in the Netherlands, south England, the Midlands, east Wales and more recently in Ireland. It feeds on herbs, blossoms, grasses and nuts, and was also reported to eat trees. It takes its name from John Reeves, who was appointed Assistant Inspector of Tea for the British East India Company in 1812.
This muntjac grows to 0.95 m (37 inches) in length, and weighs between 10 and 18 kg (22-40 pounds) when fully grown. The male has short antlers, usually four inches or less, and uses them to push enemies off balance so he can wound them with his upper two inch canine teeth. The Taiwanse subspecies (M. r. micrurus), commonly known as the Formosan Reeves' Muntjac, is relatively dark compared to the other subspecies.
The Reeve’s Muntjac can be found on display in the Asian realm at the Montgomery Zoo.
Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae) is a subspecies of tiger found on the Indonesian island of Sumatra. Recent genetic testing has revealed the presence of unique genetic markers, which isolate Sumatran tigers from all mainland subspecies. About 400-500 wild Sumatran tigers were believed to exist in 1998, but their numbers have continued to decline.