Thursday, 22 August 2013

Scots red deer 'breeding earlier due to climate change'

Scotland's red deer are breeding earlier each year, according to scientists studying the impact of climate change on the species.

It is thought to be the result of improved grazing, due to the longer growing season in spring and summer.

Scientists have been studying the red deer population on the Isle of Rum since 1953.

It is one of the longest running research projects of its kind anywhere in the world.

The climate change research is based on data gathered since 1980.

Timing events

Scientists monitor deer living in the north of Rum every day of the year and are able to identify the animals by sight.

Deer researcher Ali Morris told BBC Scotland: "In spring, the main things we're watching for are changes in the hinds' udders, as we're trying to work out if they're pregnant or lactating.

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