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1 December 2008 Defecation of sika deer, Cervus nippon
Shin-Ichi Horino, Haruto Nomiya
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Defecation time, fecal amount, and water content of feces of sika deer, Cervus nippon, were studied for two deer kept in large-scale enclosures. The deer were observed eight times for 24 hours, and all the feces were collected immediately after defecation. The defecation interval varied considerably with a median of 21 min. The number of defecations per 24 hours ranged from 9 to 49. The number of fecal pellets per deer per 24 hours showed a seasonal variation with a mean of 1276. As a parameter for the fecal pellet count method, our result did not conflict seriously with the number, 1010/deer/day, obtained from captive deer (Takatsuki et al. 1981) on the average basis. On the other hand, its seasonal variation has to be considered when a deer population is censused with pellet count method. Water content of fecal pellet varied widely with apparent response to precipitation within three days before the defecation.

Shin-Ichi Horino and Haruto Nomiya "Defecation of sika deer, Cervus nippon," Mammal Study 33(4), 143-150, (1 December 2008).
Received: 1 March 2008; Accepted: 1 July 2008; Published: 1 December 2008

defecation rate
fecal water content
large-scale deer enclosure
number of fecal pellets
pellet count method
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