Sika Deer pp 549-560 | Cite as

Sika Deer in Taiwan

  • Dale R. McCullough

The Taiwan sika deer (Cervus nippon taiouanus) migrated to the island during land-bridge periods (40,000 to 10,000 years before present), presumably from an adjacent mainland China stock that later became extinct. On Taiwan they were found mainly at low elevation habitats around the island and reached greatest abundance on the large western coastal plain. They were heavily exploited during the European colonial period, serving as currency and export items for international trade and, consequently, disappeared early from all but the more remote parts of their historic range. At the same time, their habitat was usurped for agricultural development. Exploitation for subsistence and velvet antler for the Chinese medicine market continued on the remote remnant pockets of survivors until the last known sika deer in the wild was killed in 1969. Fortunately there were many sika in private ownership, including stocks at the Taipei Zoo and on Green Island off the east coast of Taiwan. Establishment of a captive breeding facility at Kenting National Park at the southern tip of the island, stocked mainly with animals from the Taipei Zoo, resulted in increased numbers, and the eventual release of deer to the wild where they now number around 400 head (Pei chapter 38). A separate release of sika deer from captivity on Green Island has resulted in a second free-roaming population of several hundred animals. Although not now seriously threatened with extinction, to achieve full recovery it is desirable to establish a third population in the central or northern part of the island further removed from the two existing wild populations.


Sika Deer Captive Breeding Taiwan Strait Captive Breeding Program Clouded Leopard 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Literature Cited

  1. Chen, C.-L. 1968. Material culture of the Formosan aborigines. The Taiwan Museum, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  2. Chiang, S. S. 1987. The relationship between sika deer and early Taiwan history. Pages 2–24 in The 1985 annual report of the Formosan sika deer restoration study. Conservation Research Report Number 38, Kenting National Park, Taiwan. (In Chinese.)Google Scholar
  3. Davidson, J. W. 1903. The island of Formosa: Historical view from 1430 to 1900. Macmillan, New York, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  4. Eu, H. H. T. 1969. Forest recreation and wildlife conservation in Taiwan. Forest and Forest Industry Development Project, Republic of China, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  5. Hirth, F., and W. W. Rockhill. 1966. Chau Ju-Kua: his work on the Chinese and Arab trade in the twelfth and thirteen centuries entitled Cu-tan-Chi. Paragon Book Reprint Corporation, New York, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  6. Ho, C. S. 1986. A synthesis of the geologic evolution of Taiwan. Tectonphysics 125:1–16CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ho, C.-K., G.-Q. Qi, and C.-H. Chang. 1997. A preliminary study of the late Pleistocene carnivore fossils from the Penghu Channel, Taiwan. Annual of the Taiwan Museum 40:195–224Google Scholar
  8. Hsia, L. C. 1990. Feeding behavior of deer. Pages 49–73 in 1998 Sika Deer Restoration Report Kenting National Park, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  9. Hsieh, C.-M. 1964. Taiwan—Ilha Formosa: A geography in perspective. Butterworth, London, United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  10. Hu, C.-H., and H.-J. Tao. 1993. Monograph of fossil fauna in Penghu Peninsula. Culture Center of Penghu Hsien, Penghu, Taiwan. (In Chinese.)Google Scholar
  11. Kano, T. 1940. Zoogeographical studies of the Tsugitaka Mountains of Formosa. Shibusawa Institute of Ethnographic Research, Tokyo, JapanGoogle Scholar
  12. Kenting National Park. 1984. The 1984 annual report of the Formosan sika deer restoration study. Conservation Research Report Number 18, Kenting National Park, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  13. Kuo, T.-Y. 1973. Early stages of the Sinicization of Taiwan. Pages 21–29 in P. K. T. Sih, editor, Taiwan in modern times. Asia in the modern world series Number 13, St. John's University Press, St. John's, Newfoundland, CanadaGoogle Scholar
  14. Kuroda, N. 1952. Mammalogical history of Formosa, with zoogeography and bibliography. Quarterly Journal of the Taiwan Museum 5:267–304Google Scholar
  15. Lee, S.-W. 1981. Landslides in Taiwan. Pages 195–206 in South East Regional Symposium on Problems of Soil Erosion and Sedimentation. January 27–29, 1981, Bangkok, ThailandGoogle Scholar
  16. Liew, P.-M., C.-M. Kuo, S.-Y. Huang, and M.-H. Tseng. 1998. Vegetation change and terrestrial carbon storage in eastern Asia during the last glacial maximum as indicated by a new pollen record from central Taiwan. Global and Planetary Change 16–17:85–94CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Liu, H. Y. 1992. Study of the released sika deer on Green Island. East Coast Scenic Area, Taiwan Tourism Bureau, Taiwan. (In Chinese.)Google Scholar
  18. MacKay, G. L. 1895. From far Formosa: The island, its people, and missions. Fleming H. Revell Company, New York, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  19. McCullough, D. R. 1974. Status of the larger mammals in Taiwan. Tourism Bureau, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  20. McCullough, D. R., and L. L. Severinghaus. 1998. Recovery program for the endangered Taiwan sika deer. Pages 177–184 in Z. Zomborszky, editor, Advances in deer biology. Proceedings ofthe 4th International Deer Biology Congress, Kaposvar, HungaryGoogle Scholar
  21. Patel, A. D., and Y.-S. Lin. 1988. History of wildlife conservation in Taiwan. Zoology Department, National Taiwan University, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  22. Patel, A. D., and Y.-S. Lin. 1989. Zoology council on agriculture. Forestry Series No. 20, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  23. Roy, D. 2003. Taiwan: A political history. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  24. Ruhle, G. C. 1966. Advisory report on national parks for Taiwan 1965. American Committee for International Wild Life Protection, Special Publication Number 19, Bronx, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  25. Severinghaus, L. L. 1989. Natural Resources. Pages 49–127 in The Steering Committee for Taiwan 2000 Study, Taiwan 2000. Institute of Ethnology, Academia Sinica, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  26. Severinghaus, L. L., and D. R. McCullough. 1996. A comprehensive review of the sika deer restoration program in Taiwan. Report to Yangminshan National Park, Taiwan, ROC. (In Chinese and English.)Google Scholar
  27. Su, H. J. 1985. Vegetation analysis on the native habitat of Formosan sika deer and proposal of its reintroduction area in Kenting National Park. The 1984 Annual Report of the Sika Deer Restoration Study, Conservation Research Report 18:63–101. Kenting National Park, Taiwan ROCGoogle Scholar
  28. Taiwan Provincial Forestry Bureau. 1995. The third forest resources and land use inventory in Taiwan. Taiwan Provincial Forestry Bureau, Taiwan, ROCGoogle Scholar
  29. Wang, Y. 1991. Current status of Formosan sika deer restoration program. Pages 277–288 in Lin, Y. S. K.-H. Chang, editors, Proceedings of the First International Symposium on Wildlife Conservation. Council on Agriculture Forestry Series Number 39, Taipei, Taiwan, ROCGoogle Scholar
  30. Wilson, R. L. 2000. An investigation into the phylogeography of sika deer (Cervus nippon) using microsatellite markers. M. Sc. Thesis, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  31. Wayre, P. 1969. Wildlife in Taiwan. Oryx 10:46–56CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dale R. McCullough

    There are no affiliations available

    Personalised recommendations