'One cannot speak anymore of being, one must speak only of mess.' - Samuel Beckett

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Muntjac roadkill

I was cycling in Cambridge when I came across a small corpse by the side of the road. At first I thought it was a dog but when I cycled back I saw my first Muntjac deer, an unfortunate introduction. Anyway I painted what I could remember of the poor creature. Two days later the body had been removed.

The Reeves Muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi) or "Barking Deer" are doing very well in the U.K. and are fast becoming the countries most prominant feral deer. These small ruminants are about fifteen to thirty-five million years old with their remains found amongst Miocene deposits in France and Germany. That they have survived so long is a testimony to their remarkable resilience and tenacity. It's an uncomfortable shame that our evolutionary abruptness greets these elders with the disharmony of a four by four.