By Son Hoang
Mr. Nguyen Dinh Hai, Director of Xuan Lien Nature Reserve in Thanh Hoa province confirmed that a muntjac species also known as Muntiacus rooseveltorum which was believed extinct 84 years ago has now appeared in the reserve. The rediscovery of Muntiacus rooseveltorum is of the significance to science, preservation practices of Xuan Lien Natural Reserve in particular and to Thanh Hoa province in general.
He added that Muntiacus rooseveltorum belonging to the Cervidae family was reported to be discovered in Houaphanh province of Laos and considered extinct since 1929. The species’ skull sample is stored at American Museum of Natural History.
During the period of 2012 – 2014, the Center for Natural Resources and Environment Studies (CRES) of Vietnam National University, Hanoi collaborating with nature reserve staff has implemented the project “Investigating and conserving muntjac species in Xuan Lien Nature Reserve”. During the research, the expert team captured the picture of this muntjac species and found its fence samples at Xuan Lien Nature Reserve.
In addition, its horn and skin samples were also found at local poachers’ house. The Institute of Ecology and Biological resources (under Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology) examined DNA of the species via its fence and skin samples. After the comparison with the DNA sample of the species kept at American Museum of Natural History, both DNA sample were perfectly matched, which confirms that the Muntiacus rooseveltorum species reappears after 84 years of supposed extinction. Photo.