WROCŁAW, Poland - The nighttime birth of a Philippine mouse-deer was recorded at the Zoo Wrocław in Poland on Nov. 10 — the first such birth captured on video, according to the zoo.
Not a lot is known about the habits and behaviors of mouse-deer nor had a birth ever been recorded before because the animals are so rare and secretive, the zoo said.
"It is also difficult to observe them in our zoo," the zoo said in a translation of a news release. "They hide from people in the thicket of grasses or in the recesses of the pagoda."
After installing surveillance cameras, the zoo was able to capture the activity of the mouse-deer. The video shows the birth and moments afterward. The images will provide answers to questions about the elusive animal's birthing habits, zookeepers said.
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"It is a conservation milestone for this species," Zoo Wrocław president Radosław Ratajszczak said in a statement.
Mouse-deer are endemic to the islands of Balabac, Bugsuc, and Ramos in the Philippines. Their population is shrinking as they lose habitat to palm oil plantations as well as illegal poaching, the Zoo Wrocław said.
With Storyful. This story was produced in New York.
This rare mouse-deer was born at a zoo in Poland on Nov. 10, 2020. (Zoo Wrocław photo via Storyful)