British wildlife recordings
Capreolus capreolus : Roe Deer - Cervidae; Falco subbuteo : Hobby - Falconidae
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Bagshot, Surrey: OS Grid Reference(491500,163500)
Williams, Aubrey John
Roe Deer, Capreolus capreolus & Hobby, Falco subbuteo
A call made by a roe deer recorded at Bagshot, Surrey. This small deer is an agile animal, bounding fast for cover when disturbed. It frequents open, mixed woodland areas in Scotland and England, remaining absent from most of the Midlands and much of Wales. Although the buck alone possesses antlers, both sexes display foxy red coats, white 'rump patches' and black muzzles with white chins. During the autumn the red coat becomes greyer and the buck's antlers are cast. New antlers begin to grow in deep winter, protected throughout with a velvet skin. The mating or 'rutting' season begins in July, when bucks chase does in circles through the grass, often forming tracks called 'roe rings'. Roe deer are the only hoofed mammals to delay their pregnancies each year. Females conceive in high summer yet do not allow the development of their fertilized eggs until midwinter. Kids are born, often as twins, in the following spring. For the first few days of their lives these young deer hide in dense vegetation. Their lightly spotted coats help them to keep well camouflaged, out of the gaze of predators such as foxes and eagles. Although the Roe deer's range is growing in the UK, numbers can be affected by culling and by traffic accidents. There are protection measures that help to safeguard the population, such as restricted hunting seasons and poaching controls.