Thanks to our awesome supporters, the Jerusalem hills are once more home to the Biblical Persian Fallow Deer – a species that has been revived from near extinction (only 25 individuals were left in the world in 1956).
The reintroduction of the Persian Fallow Deer into the Nahal Soreq Valley in the Jerusalem Hills has faced some tough challenges over the last few years – because of train accidents and marauding packs of feral dogs (stray dogs that revert to pack behavior, causing a danger to wildlife and to people), the first groups of deer released suffered a mortality rate of 50%. However, Israel’s Ministry of the Environment has now taken measures to deal with the feral dog problem and we are delighted to report the following successes for 2014:
To ensure a transition that causes as little stress to the animals as possible, the deer are tranquilized using a dart gun that is fired from a distance. From the time they are tranquilized for transportation, their vital signs are monitored by a team of vets and keepers.
Protecting and enriching this natural habitat benefits not only the Persian Fallow Deer, but also many other endemic species like jackals, wolves, wild boar, and porcupines to name only a few.
Thank you all so much for being a part of this inspiring conservation project. We look forward to reporting continued success in the future.
The Jerusalem Biblical Zoo Team
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