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Tucked away in a quiet corner of the zoo is a very rare and unusual species called a pudu. Pudus are the world's smallest species of deer, and weigh just 1kg (2.2lbs) at birth. They stand 38cm tall at the shoulder when fully grown and weigh around 9-15kg (20-33lbs). A male’s antlers only ever grow to around 10cm long.

Pudus are quite shy animals and we know very little about them in the wild.

Pudus are classified as a vulnerable species and are part of an international breeding programme. They live in lowland temperate rainforests in Chile and south west Argentina but their numbers have declined due to their rainforest habitat being destroyed and cleared for cattle ranching and other human developments. They also suffer at the hands of natural predators such as pumas and foxes.

Click here for more information on pudu.

Male pudu and baby - Photo taken by Peter Budd

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