The mysterious white deer: anomalous coloring in different Neotropical deer

Guastalla, Michelle Granato, de Azevedo, Fernanda Cavalcanti, Vogliotti, Alexandre, Lacerda, Wagner Rafael, Magina, Giulius Cesare, Cardoso, Clarice Augusta Carvalho, Endo, Whaldener, Peres, Carlos Augusto ORCID:, Haugaasen, Torbjørn, Rocha, Daniel Gomes and Lemos, Frederico Gemesio (2021) The mysterious white deer: anomalous coloring in different Neotropical deer. Mammalian Biology, 101 (5). pp. 665-673. ISSN 1616-5047

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Animal coloring serves several functions, including camouflage and thermoregulation. However, some individuals have anomalous coloring patterns due to excess (melanism) or deficiency (albinism, leucism, or piebaldism) in melanin production. Although these anomalies occur in several species, there are few cited cases. Here, we report the occurrence of color anomalies in three Neotropical deer species. Data were obtained from wildlife inventories, through direct observation, camera-traps, and/or deer carcasses, between 2011 and 2020, in three biomes—the Brazilian Savanna (Cerrado), and the Atlantic and Amazon Rain Forests. We registered 10 individuals with anomalous coloring from Minas Gerais, São Paulo, Amazonas and Rondônia states; seven Mazama gouazoubira (six piebalds and one leucistic), two piebald M. americana, and one piebald M. nemorivaga. Of the registered individuals, five were males, two females, and three of undetermined sex. To our knowledge, this is the largest set of anomalous coloring data for Neotropical deer. Even with the increasing reports of anomalous coloring, little is known about the factors that may cause this and how it influences the survival of individuals and consequently wild populations.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: cetartiodactyla,endogamy,genetic disorders,leucism,mazama,piebaldism,ecology, evolution, behavior and systematics,animal science and zoology ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/1100/1105
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
University of East Anglia Research Groups/Centres > Theme - ClimateUEA
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Environmental Biology
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 09 Sep 2021 00:21
Last Modified: 08 Jun 2023 16:30
DOI: 10.1007/s42991-021-00156-9

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