Age and seasonal coat changes in long haired and normal Fallow deer (Dama dama)



Coat changes from birth to the second winter coat in a long haired variety of Fallow deer are described and compared with normal deer. The long haired deer are characterised by a dense, curly crown and long tufts of hair growing from the ears. The long haired coat always contained a high proportion of growing hairs in contrast to the normal coat in which there were discrete generations of growing hairs. The difference between the long haired and normal deer was most marked in the first winter when the hairs of the long coat were longer and finer than normal and tended to be easily wetted in contrast to the normal coarse winter coat.