AskDefine | Define muntjac

Dictionary Definition

muntjac n : small Asian deer with small antlers and a cry like a bark [syn: barking deer]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Etymology

From muntjak, from Sundanese mencek.

Pronunciation

/ˈmʌntdʒak/

Noun

  1. Any of various species of east Asian deer of the genus Muntiacus, having short antlers and a barking call.

Synonyms

Translations

  • Lao: ຟານ

Extensive Definition

Muntjac are deer of the genus Muntiacus, also known as Barking Deer. Muntjac are the oldest known deer, appearing 15-35 million years ago, with remains found in Miocene deposits in France and Germany.
The present-day species are native to Southeast Asia and can be found from India and Sri Lanka to southern China, Taiwan and Indonesian islands. Reeves's Muntjac has been introduced to England and is now common in some areas there. Inhabiting tropical regions, the deer have no seasonal rut and mating can take place at any time of year. However, this behaviour is retained by populations introduced to temperate countries. Males have short antlers, which can regrow but they tend to fight for territory with their tusks (downward pointing canine teeth).
Muntjac are of great interest in evolutionary studies because of their dramatic chromosome variations and the recent discovery of several new species.
Ten species:
muntjac in Bulgarian: Muntiacus
muntjac in Czech: Muntžak
muntjac in German: Muntjaks
muntjac in Spanish: Muntiacus
muntjac in Esperanto: Muntjako
muntjac in French: Muntiacus
muntjac in Indonesian: Kijang
muntjac in Norwegian: Muntjaker
muntjac in Occitan (post 1500): Muntiacus
muntjac in Polish: Muntiacus
muntjac in Swedish: Muntjaker
muntjac in Vietnamese: Mang (thú)
muntjac in Chinese: 麂
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