Oh Deer, Fangs Are Showing Up, Again!
According to a Wildlife Conservation news release published on Friday, a species of fanged deer, last seen 66 years ago, was recently spotted by scientists in northeastern Afghanistan.
The Kashmir musk deer, one of seven similar species found in Asia, is endangered due to habitat loss and because of poachers hunting the animal for its prized scent glands. No members of the species had been seen in Afghanistan since 1948.
Only the male musk deer have fangs, used solely during breeding season to battle for mates, according to the Washington Post. According to Discovery, the deer stand at about 2 feet tall.
The WCS survey team noted that the deer were “discrete” and “difficult to spot,” and almost impossible to get them on camera.
Peter Zahler, WCS Deputy Director of Asia Programs, dubbed the deer “one of Afghanistan’s living treasures,” and said in the release that he hopes “that conditions will stabilize soon to allow WCS and local partners to better evaluate conservation needs of this species.”