Tiny rare deer born at Chester Zoo weighing less than a bag of sugar

  • Chester Zoo have released a video of the rare deer

A rare deer that is the "smallest in the world" has been born at Chester Zoo weighing less than a bag of sugar.

The male Southern Pudu fawn has been named Paolo by keepers. It is just over six inches tall, similar in size to a guinea pig.

Experts say he'll only be around 18 inches high when he's fully grown.

Southern Pudus are native to rainforest areas in southern Chile and south-western Argentina.

They are listed as near-threatened by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which means that the species could face an uncertain future.

Loss of rainforest habitat and illegal poaching has led to a serious decline in their numbers according to conservationists.

Caroline Wright, a Pudu keeper at the zoo, says, “Pudus are the smallest deer in the world – and so you can just imagine how tiny a new born is.

"In fact, being similar in size to a guinea pig, Paolo makes even Bambi look huge!

“But while they may only be tiny and have little legs, they are excellent sprinters. And what they lack in size they make up for in strategy – running in zigzag patterns to help them fend off the interest of less nimble predators.

“Pudu fawns have distinctive flecks of white fur on their backs to help with their camouflage.

"These fade as they get older but Paolo, at the young age he is, is very much sporting these for the time being.

"We’re ever so pleased with his development so far and hopefully he’ll not only help us to put a spotlight on these wonderful animals, but also go on to play his own part in the conservation breeding programme to protect the species.”

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