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Fawn from smallest species of deer born at Chester Zoo

Fawn Thor with his mother
The fawn weighed 900g when he was born

Chester Zoo has welcomed a rare pudu fawn, the world's smallest species of deer.

The animal, which weighed fewer than 900g (2lb) when he was born, has been named Thor by zoo keepers.

Native to South America, the pudu is a vulnerable species and subject to an international conservation breeding programme.

"Despite being small in stature, they are very good sprinters," keeper Sarah Roffe said.

"What they lack in size, they make up for in strategy - running in zigzags to try and escape from less nimble predators."

She said Thor has distinctive white spotted markings on his back to help camouflage him from predators, which in the wild includes pumas and foxes.

The pudu originates from the temperate rainforests in Chile and south-western Argentina.

Chester Zoo said numbers have declined partly due to their habitat being destroyed and cleared for cattle ranching and other human developments.

A fully grown pudu deer stands at 38cm (15in) and weighs about 9-15kg (20-33lbs).

The male's antlers grow to 4ins (10cm) in length.

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