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Chinese Water Deer (Hydropotes inermis)

The distribution of Chinese Water Deer (CWD) is the most localised of all the UK deer species, currently established in Bedfordshire, north Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire and Norfolk.

CWD were first kept at London Zoo in 1873 and then Whipsnade Zoo from where they escaped in 1929.

As the name suggests their preferred habitats are wetland areas such as the fens of Cambridgeshire and the Norfolk Broads. However they are also well adapted to living in woodland and open fields.

The most obvious defining feature of Chinese Water Deer from all other UK deer species is that the males have no antlers, but instead have protruding tusks. In size CWD fall between Muntjac and Roe deer. Their round faces and large ears earn them the description of having 'teddy bear' looks.

Although Chinese Water Deer may not present the greatest of stalking challenges, they remain a highly sought-after species, particularly due to their relative scarcity compared to other UK deer.

Open hunting seasons for CWD in England and Wales
Male (Buck) & Female (Doe) 1st November - 31st March