Factors affecting reproduction in red deer (Cervus elaphus) hinds on Rhum

in Reproduction
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Summary. In a population of free-ranging red deer hinds on the Isle of Rhum (Inner Hebrides) we investigated relationships between four aspects of reproductive performance (fertility, calf birth weight, birth sex ratio and calving date) and four variables likely to affect the mother's condition: age, reproductive status, home range area and year of calving. Fertility was significantly related to mother's age, reproductive status and home range area as well as to year of calf's birth. Stag calves were heavier than hind calves and birth weight was significantly related to mother's age, home range area and year of (calf's) birth but not to mother's reproductive status. Birth sex ratio did not differ from parity, and was not significantly associated with any of the four variables examined. Birth date was significantly related to the mother's reproductive status, home range area and year of (calf's) birth but not to mother's age or the sex of the calf.

 

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