Scottish red deer could disappear from mainland
Scientists from the University of Edinburgh have said that the Scottish red deer may die out because of breading with the Japanese sika.
The problems is that the Japanese sika reproduces when it is younger than the red deer, so the amount of sika being born is starting to become a problem according to land owners and farmers.
If, as thought the quick reproductions continue over the coming years the University scientists believe the Scottish red deer could disappear altogether from the mainland.
Most of these animals live in the Highlands and Islands, though large numbers can be found in the Galloway hills.
This deer is slightly smaller than the West European red deer. During the summer, the coat is lighter in color with a distinct border to the lighter patch on the rump. Rest of the color is dark reddish brown with a grayer face and neck. The legs are blackish brown. In winter, the animal grows long hair on the neck. The brow and the bez tines usually close together and at a distance above the burr.
SCOTLAND'S most iconic animal is under threat because it is breeding with an alien species, scientists have discovered.
Red deer could disappear from mainland Scotland because they are breeding with the Japanese sika deer, according to researchers at the University of Edinburgh.
And they warn that because the Japanese sika reproduces when it is younger than our native animal, usually in its first year, this could result in a rapid growth in the population of deer in Scotland. Already landowners struggle to control the high numbers.