Cervus Elaphus

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Invasive species are species that has been introduced to an environment where they are not from originally, and that have since become a problem through spread and increase in population, often hurting the plants and animals already there. Cervus elaphus (C. elaphus), also known as the red deer or elk, is an invasive animal found now all over South America and New Zealand (Flueck, 2010). Originally from North America, Asia, and Europe (hence the common name European Red Deer), Cervus elaphus were introduced less than one hundred years ago in Argentina and places in New Zealand and ran ramped over National Parks and natural forests. They influenced native flora and fauna and disrupt their processes (Flueck, 2010). These red deer cause less regeneration of favored plants which stop normal vegetation to grow thus changing structure and composition of the ecosystem in which they reside (Flueck, 2010). Now in competition with native deer in Chile, Argentina, and New Zealand, ecological concerns have been raised to save the native species already existing as well as the canopy environment where they live.

With not many descriptive characteristics, this red deer, with its plain brown body and lighter stomach, has many details on where they are from and where they are headed. C. elaphus are indigenous to Eurasia and North America including but not limiting to Afghanistan, Belgium, Denmark, France, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the United States (Lovari, 2008). They were introduced in Argentina, Australia, Chile, New Zealand, and Portugal but now have begun to cause trouble beyond what can be controlled. This species spread around many areas not due to some unknown cause but because C. elaphus is on the endangered species list as well (Lo...

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... following control of invasive deer. Conservation Biology 17(2): 450-459.

Flueck, W. T. 2010. Cervus elaphus (mammal). Global Invasive Species Database. February 23, 2011

Lovari, S., Herrero. J., Conroy, J., Maran, T., Giannatos, G., Stubbe, M., Aulagnier, S., Jdeidi, T., Masseti, M. Nader, I., de Smet, K. & Cuzin, F. 2008. Cervus elaphus. In: IUCN 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2010.4. .

Merino, M.L., Carpinetti, B.N., and Abbal, A.M. 2009. Invasive mammals in the national parks system of Argentina. Natural Areas Journal 29(1):42-49.

Relva, A., Nunez, M.A., and Simberloff, D. 2010. Introduced deer reduce native plant cover and facilitate invasion of non-native tree species: evidence for invasional meltdown. Biological Invasions. 12(2): 303-311.
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