Sika Deer pp 375-384 | Cite as

Survival Patterns of Male and Female Sika Deer on Kinkazan Island, Northern Japan

  • Masato Minami
  • Nobumasa Ohnishi
  • Seiki Takatsuki

We constructed life tables for sika deer males and females on Kinkazan Island in northeastern Japan to follow survivorship and examine patterns of mortality by sex, age, and social status in this population. Because there are no predators or human hunting on Kinkazan Island, these results represent background, natural mortality, which is characteristic of this protected situation. Mortality was high in both sexes among fawns, with most occurring shortly after birth or near the end of winter of the first year. Females survived better than males at all ages: they had a mean lifespan of 4.0 years compared to 3.1 years in males; both were short because of the high mortality of fawns. Dominant males survived better than subordinate males. Most mortality of adults occurred in late winter and was related to starvation. The close connection of mortality to food shortage is reflective of the high deer density in relation to carrying capacity in this protected population.


Life Table Sika Deer Dominant Male Subordinate Male Bighorn Sheep 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masato Minami
    • 1
  • Nobumasa Ohnishi
    • 2
  • Seiki Takatsuki
    • 3
  1. 1.Director, Wildlife Community InstituteKaruizawaJapan
  2. 2.Senior Researcher, Eco-planning Research Co. Ltd.HigashimurayamaJapan
  3. 3.Professor, Laboratory of Wildlife Ecology and ConservationAzabu UniversitySagamiharaJapan

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