From the Wildlife Conservation Society:
A southern pudu fawn (Pudu puda) was born at the WCS’s (Wildlife Conservation Society) Queens Zoo. The pudu is the world’s smallest deer species.
Born on May 12, the male fawn is still nursing but will soon transition to a diet of fresh leaves, grain, kale, carrots and hay. The white spots, characteristic to juveniles of many deer species, will fade and disappear as the fawn gets older.
The arrival of the fawn brings the total number of pudu on exhibit at the Queens Zoo to three. This is the third year in a row this pair has successfully raised a fawn.
Pudu exhibit extraordinary behaviors. They bark when they sense danger and when chased, they run in a zig-zag pattern to escape predators including owls, foxes, pumas, and small cats.
Although small in stature, only 12 to 14 inches at the shoulder, pudu are excellent jumpers and sprinters. They are generally shy and solitary, preferring to hide in thick vegetation.
The Queens Zoo breeds pudu as part of the Species Survival Program (SSP), a cooperative breeding program designed to enhance the genetic viability and demographic stability of animal populations in zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Southern pudu are native to Chile and Argentina and are designated Vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Using research and conservation practices, WCS is working in the pudu’s range countries to grapple with ways to curb habitat loss and other threats to pudu and other native wildlife.