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2007/03/18

台灣梅花鹿

這是我寫的有關台灣梅花鹿, 兩千字的報告,寫了很久。 大部分是從墾丁國家公園的研究報告翻譯的, 台灣真的有很多很多很棒的生物, 只可惜越來越少了。 附帶一提,google查詢梅花鹿, 台灣的網頁幾乎都是復育保護研究, 大陸的網頁幾乎都是繁殖飼養取鹿茸。 差別還真大啊!

The Fairy in Mountains Cervus nippon taiouanus Taiwan, a small island close to mainland China, where lives abundant unique species. There are Oncorhynchus masou formosanus -- the only landlocked  salmon of the world, Formosan macaque, Formosan serow etc.. Cervus nippon  taiouanus is one of them. Formosan sika deer is the trivial name. It belongs to  the Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Chordata, Class Mammalia, Order Ungulata,  Family Cervidae, Genus Cervus, Species Nippon, Subspecies C. n. taiouanus.  It is also the biggest one of the thirteen subspecies of Cervus Nippon. Because  of the dramatic change in environmental conditions and the unlimited hunted in  the past, the truly wild Formosan sika deer is already disappeared. The last wild  one was said to be caught in 1969. After that, the ones we see today are all  human-raised.The origin of Formosan sika deer is unknown because there is  not enough research information in the past. Biologists conjectured the origin  backtracks to the latest ice age about 10,000 years ago. The ice and snow melt  and formed the Taiwan Strait, which separated Mainland China and Taiwan.  Taiwan then became an island all surrounding by oceans. The most mammalians  which can not fly were isolated and some of them evolved to endemic species.  Some researchers believe that there are probably two different species of  Formosan sika deer in the eastern and western parts of Taiwan due to isolation  by the central mountain range. However, there is no evidence could prove their  assumption. Formosan sika deer inhabits in deciduous forests, hills and fields  about 400m ~ 500m elevations. It prefers short brushes with some trees  covered area. It lives close to water sources and tends to live in groups. The  distances from humen are also in consideration. The research shows that it  keeps at least 800m from human population. Formasan sika deer is hervibore.  It eats mainly herbage plants, leaves on deciduous trees and brushes. Their  eating behaviors could be divided into four category which depend on the  height of the plants. They are low, medium, high and reef levels. Level low  eating plants include grass, falling leaves and small trees about the shoulder  heights of the deer. Level medium plants are higher, the deers need to raise  their heads to reach the leaves. Sometimes they would break the branches by  pulling them down with mouth. The deer can jump for the level high plants.  They snap at the branches in the air and bring the branches down. The males  can use their antlers to get the higher leaves as well. The level reef plantsare  harder for the deer to reach. Sometimes the deer would climb on the reef and  prowl around. The biologists observed the releasing Formasan sika deer in  Kenting National Park and found out that their mainly food consumption is at  low level. The least one is the high level eating. Also, the males can reach  higher branches than females because they are larger and are with their antlers. Formosan sika deer is about 1.5m in length, and the shoulder height is around 98 cm. It has a very beautiful name in Taiwanese which means a deer with plum  flowers (The plum flower is also the national flower of Taiwan.) The color of its  body changes with the seasons. In summer it has short and shiny hair in  red-brown color. There is a dark brown line on the middle of its back and white  plum blossoms on the sides of the body. In the winter the hair is longer and  thicker with lighter color. The white spots is less obvious. The belly, insides  of four limbs, under the tail and the butt area are white. The male deer also  has long mane on the neck in winters. Males are larger and heavier than  females. Females tend to stay in groups while males like being alone. Only  the male has antlers. There is no branch on the antler before the age of two.  The first branch grows during two to three years old. After three years old,  they grow one branch per year until there are three branches. Some of them  could have four branches. The antler can grow more than 70 cm in length.  During the mating seasons in the autumn, the males will lock antlers and  fight one another for a position of dominance and the right to mate. Also,  males would roll themselves in the mud and making their scent stronger  in order to attract females.  The antler is one of the main cause for extinct of Formosan sika deer. Chinese believes that the deer’s antler is a good medicine. The hunters also love to  have their beautiful skin. The invaders from Holland, China and Japan killed  thousands and thousans of Formosan sika deer in the past. The records  show that at least 100,000 pieces of deer skins were exported from Taiwan  to those countries at that time. The habitats and the food sources for  Formosan sika deer also decreased by the growing human populations.  In 1984, the same time of the Kenting National Park built, the manage  department of the park started a plan of reproduced Formosan sika deer.  A group of biologist spent almost two years to compare the nuclears, DNA  and genes to make sure the deers were truly origined in Taiwan. After  compared genetic information among Cervus Nippon in Russia, Japan,  China and Vietnam, there were apparent differences to Cervus nippon  taiouanus. Thus, the biologists could assume that Formosan sika deer is  the endemic species in Taiwan. They chose 5 males and 17 females from  the Formosan sika deer in the Taipei City Zoo to be the parental generation.  The recovery plan consisted three processes: preparing, releasing and tracking. Table. 1 The Stages of Cervus nippon taiouanus Recovery Plan Process Object Achievement Preparing (1984 - April 1988) - Collected Information - Chose the first generation - Chose the recovery area - Built institution - Completed reaserch - 22 deers were in November, 1986 - Set up120 hectares area in Kending National Park with 2 meter tall fence - Deer pen built and the food plants completed Releasing (April 1988 - 1994) - Release in different stages and keep its wildness - Natural adapation - The research of the plants usages and environment in the area - The reseaech of behaviors of the deers - The health and disease prevention system set up Tracking(1994) - Evaluated the success rates of the release action - Chose the places for releasing - Track the groups for their behaviors, variations, and effects of the areas in long term - Released 10 in January 1994 - Released 10 in April 1995 - Released 30 in January 1997 - Estimated the amount of natrual reproduction: over 100 deers - Educate people the importance of recovery To set up a system of diseases prevention and ovservation, the biologists  started to do healthy check-up for all wildlife animals and the deers in the  park from August, 1991 to July, 1992. They took blood samples in 30  released deers to test Mycobacterium and Brucella spp.. The results were  negative. Also, four of them had lower numbers of RBCs, PCV, MCHC and  TP than normal ranges. The fecal test results in 85 samples of 5 random  tests, 9 of them were round worms positive. Some of the deer also had  infection of Trichophyton spp. (skin diseases), alopecia (caused by louse),  rotten on the ears (second infection), swelling on the face (caused by bee  sting or others), overgrowth hooves (genetic problems), Clostridium  Perfringens infection, and ulcer around newborn deer’s anus caused  by licking too much from the mother. A healthy deer should be able to react  immediately as something approaching. It is very sensitive in nature, alert  at the first sign of danger, setting the neck upright and opening eyes wide.  It is very easily stressed out by too much handling and disturbing by human.  This is the reason that people should minimize the visits to the released deer  and keep the voice down when approaches were needed. The stray dogs in Kenting National Park were the main threating. The deers were killed or  injured because of getting bitten. Some of them had bone fractures and got  second infection. The biologists also listed some common clinical signs of  diseases that the deers may have. A sick deer would stay away from its herd if it was sick. It also would walk awkwardly, stand at abnormal postions or lay  on the groud. The deers could have skin problems with the signs of hair colors  and textures change, dischrage from eyes, the nose and the mouth. They would  have diarrhea, abnormal bowel movement, weight loss, anorexia with the  gastrointestinal diseases.  As tracking the released Formosan sika deer, the biologists had a broadview  of their distribution pattern and abundance. The competition among other  animals such as sheep in the Kenting National Park became an unsolved  issue. These two animals have similar inhabitants and eating habits. They  both broadly eat grass and leaves on the deciduous trees. Sheep crowd  out the deer to the area with lower quality and quantity of food sources. Sheep  also have larger living areas than the deer because sheep are not afraid of  human. Long term innutrtion would delay the sex maturity age of male deer  and reproduction rates in females. The unhealthy females could not provide  enough nutrtion to the babies, results in early death of newborns. It also effects the quality of colostrum from the females and reduces the immunity  of the baby. Another issue for the recovery plan would be the low density of  the group. The growing rate of the group was slow.The number of released  deer were small so that they only stay aournd the recovery area. Biologists  suggested to release several healthy adults regularly outside of the recovery  area to the wild group. Increasing the number of healthy, reproductive with  higher survival rate individuals in the wild group could raise the density  gradually until it reach the safe range. It may also spread out the distribution  of Formosan sika deer. The biologists considered to set up an exit for the  selected individuals by installing a pedal-controlled door (In this case, the  individuals were selected by weight.) By releasing individuals from the source  group (In the recovery area) to the sink group (Outside of the recovery area), the group density, survival and reproduction rates could be raised gradually  and meet the safe range of group numbers eventually.  As mentioned before, there are so many unique endemic species in Taiwan  and most of them are endangered because of the same reason of Formosan  sika deer. Natural conservation and reproduction plans for the animals and  plants are very important and serious issues. The typhoons and earthquakes  are the main disaster in Taiwan. There are several typhoons passing directly  or around Taiwan each summer and fall. Heavy rains wash down the  mountains and cause landslides. The typhoon destroy the reserved areas for  the wild animals and damage their food sources. In 1999, a quake registered  a magnitude of 7.3 on the Richter scale and had its epicenter at the central  part of Taiwan. Ever since then, the natural environment condition in Taiwan  is getting worse and worse. The biologists are still hoping their plans for the wildlife animals could cope with the dreadful environment. Wish the next few generations could have a chance to watch Formosan sika deer running freely  in the mountains like fairies someday but to see them stock in a small pen  in the zoo. Table. 2 The proportion of endemic species in Taiwan Category Species Endemic species/subspecies Endemic species/subspecies(%) Mammal 70 45 64 Bird 450 84 19 Reptile 85 27 32 Amphibian 32 10 31 Fresh Water Fish 220 36 16 Butterfly 400 50 13 Total 1257 252 20 Reference Retrieved March 1, from http://enanimal.tesri.gov.tw/main/animal_sub.asp?item=3&id=68&Icategory=1 Retrieved March 1, from http://www.ktnp.gov.tw/manager/pageeditor/stations/cp/10024/history03.asp Retrieved March 1, from http://www.tesri.gov.tw/english/E_species.asp Retrieved March 1, from http://72.14.203.104/search?q=cache:ux8vU8Z9-igJ:www.gio.gov.tw/webPage.asp%3FCuItem%3D19131+Taiwan+landlocked+salmon&hl=zh-TW&ct=clnk&cd=2 Retrieved March 1, from http://www.geocities.com/huxx0058/sika/stra.html Retrieved March 1, from http://72.14.205.104/search?q=cache:n3IEBS7TKzoJ:www.gio.gov.tw/info/ecology/English/animals_e/LowAnimals_e/LowAnimals06_e.htm+Formosan+sika+deer&hl=zh-TW&ct=clnk&cd=3 Retrieved March 1, from http://www.ktnp.gov.tw/manager/pageeditor/stations/cp/10026/research_res_84.asp Retrieved March 1, from http://www.newtaiwan.com.tw/bulletinview.jsp?period=341&bulletinid=9751



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