Blimey. Three posts in a week! Don’t worry, it’s only a short one.
I think I’ve just seen a Sika deer.
I was driving home from work at about 7.40pm tonight, and just as I passed the small wood that contains the Hawthorn Tree Sett a deer crossed the road in front of me and paused on the verge by the hedge. This is quite a regular occurrence. On most days I see a Muntjac or a Chinese Water Deer when I’m driving, occasionally a Fallow. But this deer was different.
It was dark in colour, a dark grey. It was a stag with medium-sized antlers, but they were rounded antlers, not the flat palmate ones of a Fallow stag. It had a blunt face with a prominent broad nose, not the more refined features of a Fallow. And last but not least, it had a distinctive, heart-shaped, white rump patch, with a black tail that was noticeably much thinner than a Fallow’s.
I think, all things considered, that it was a Sika stag. It could have been an unusually coloured Fallow, but taking everything together it fits better as a Sika. The reason I am writing this is because although there are many deer in this part of the country, Sika are rare. I’ve only heard of two or three other Sika sightings. This is the first and only Sika I’ve ever seen. That’s what makes it worth recording.
Not a bad sighting for the drive home from work. If only I had that camera ready in the car like I said I should…