EAZA Best Practice Guidelines for the tufted deer (Elaphodus cephalophus).
1st edition. European Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
The tufted deer (Elaphodus cephalophus) is a small deer with three subspecies, which is near-endemic in south China. It is closely related to the muntjacs (Muntiacus). A tuft of hair, dark brown coat, white patterned ears and tail, and, for the males, enlarged canines and very small antlers, are the main characteristics for this species. The species occurs in forests, mainly on hillsides, and is a browsing herbivore. The species has a seasonal reproduction; mating takes place in autumn and fawns are born inspring and early summer. The conservation status is Near Threatened and this status is supposed to vary between subspecies. In European zoo collections, Michie’s tufted deer (Elaphodus cephalophus michianus) are maintained. The tufted deer needs a planted enclosure which provides shade and shelter. An interesting enclosure is enriching in itself. Year-round access to an indoor area is recommended. They can be kept individually,in a pair or in a trio, but always only one adult male per enclosure. The animals should be fed forage, browse, (leafy) vegetables and concentrate, enriched with vitamin E. Tufted deer are strong, and few medical conditions are reported. The species should not be housed with or near to sheep, since they are susceptible to infection with ovine herpesvirus 2.