15 Calamian Deer Facts You’ll Never Forget

Calamian deer facts talk about this species of deer from the Calamian Islands.

Are you in search of interesting species of deer from the continent of Asia? If yes, then you must read about the Calamian deer species from the country of the Philippines. The Calamian Islands are part of the Palawan province islands. It is here that the endemic Calamian deer are found. Out of the four major regions in the Calamian Islands, the Calamian deer are found in three: Culion, Calauit, and Busuanga. The fourth region, Coron Island, does not have this species. However, despite being native to this region, the Calamian deer are an endangered species owing to them being overhunted. The loss of habitats also plays a part in their steady decline. Conservation programs by the governments have led to no significant recovery in their population.

If you want to know more about this endangered deer, scroll down to read more. If you want to learn about other species of deer, why don't you take a look at white-tailed deer facts and tufted deer facts?

Calamian Deer

Fact File

What do they prey on?


What do they eat?


Average litter size?


How much do they weigh?

79-110 lb (35.8-49.8 kg)

How long are they?

3.5-3.8 ft (1-1.1 m)

How tall are they?

2-2.5 ft (0.6-0.7 m)

What do they look like?

Tawny-brown and rusty yellowish

Skin Type


What are their main threats?

Hunting and loss of habitat

What is their conservation status?


Where you'll find them

Forest, grassland, savanna


Calamian Islands (Culion Island, Busuanga Island) in the province of Palawan, Philippines





Scientific Name

Axis calamianensis





Calamian Deer Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Calamian deer?

Calamian deer (Axis calamianensis) is a species of deer that is native to the three areas that are part of the Calamian Islands in the Philippines. They occur in Culion Island, Busuanga Island, and the island of Calauit. The Calamian hog deer, as it is also called, has a host of other names. These include the names Ciervo Porquerizo de los Calamianes, Ciervo de Los Calamianes, and Cerf Cochon Calamien.

What class of animal does a Calamian deer belong to?

The Calamian deer (Axis calamianensis) is a species of deer that belongs to the Mammalia or mammal class. These deers are part of the group known as the hog deer species.

How many Calamian deer are there in the world?

While the Calamian deer population has been subject to a rapid decline in the wild in recent years owing to hunting and loss of habitat. This Endangered species of deer has been part of many surveys carried out in search of their exact population. Some references point us towards the population estimate of 1000 deers in the wild, while others tell us that there are no more than 500 adults living in the wild now. Whatever be the number, the fact that the population of the Cerf Cochon Calamien is sharply declining.

Where does a Calamian deer live?

The Calamian deer (Axis calamianensis) or the Calamian hog deer is endemic to the Calamian Islands, which are part of the Palawan province in the Philippines. This deer species is only found in three out of the four Calamian Islands. Also sometimes known as the hog deer, this Philippine deer can be found in the islands of Culion, Busuanga, and Calauit. Apart from these islands, these animals are also found in zoo enclosures around the world.

What is a Calamian deer's habitat?

The endangered Calamian deer (Axis calamianensis) or the Ciervo de Los Calamianes inhabit areas of savanna, woodlands, and grasslands. Occurring in the tropical zone habitat and ecology, they are also seen residing in second-growth forests. Like other deer species, Calamian deer are animals that are crepuscular by nature. This means that they are active during the early part of the day and during the twilight part of the day. For the daylight part of the day, the Philippine deer rests in shades.

Who do Calamian deers live with?

While this species of hog deer is primarily solitary, the Philippine deer are known to form small herds. When they form small herds, the number of Calamian hog deer is no more than 27 individuals. However, when these mainly solitary deers do indeed form herds, their average number varies between  seven to 14 individuals.

How long does a Calamian deer live?

The Axis calamianensis (Calamian hog deer) or the Ciervo Porquerizo de Los Calamianes has a lifespan that ranges from around 12 - 16 years. They are some sources that the Calamian hog deer can even live up to 20 years. When compared to the axis deer, Indian hog deer, and other species of deer, Calamian hog deer has a slightly longer average lifespan.

How do they reproduce?

Like other species of hog deer, Calamian hog deer breeding takes place throughout the year. However, a peak in births can be observed between the months of March and June. The reproduction takes place when the sperms released by the males fertilize the eggs in the ovaries of females. The gestation period of females of this species is thought to be around six to eight months, while the average number is thought to be 220 - 225 days. The Calamian deer fawn is born after the gestation period and does not sport any spots on their bodies. Young deers are hidden by their parents till the time they can move around with their mother. Sexual maturity in these endangered animals is reached at the age of eight to 12 months.  

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of the Calamian hog deer is thought to be Endangered in their ecology as per the evaluation done by the International Union For Conservation of Nature. The mainly solitary Calamian deer from the islands of Culion, Calauit, and Busuanga (part of the Palawan province) have been affected majorly by hunting in the wild. For the endangered species of Calamian deer, niche markets exist where their meat is sold locally. Besides that, what has also led to the decrease in their numbers in the Philippines are habitat losses on the islands.

Calamian Deer Fun Facts

What do Calamian deer look like?

These deers from the Calamian Islands are smaller in size than other animals in their family. Their appearance is quite unique too with a body structure that is best described as stocky. Males have antlers on the head that are three-pronged in nature. The antlers start developing on males concurrent to their sexual maturity. Shedding and regrowth of the antlers on the head are quite common in these deers and occur in a period of nine to ten months. As a result, do not be surprised to see males with varying heights of antlers. The antler of a Calamian deer can grow up to 12 in (30.4 cm) size.

For the fur coloration of the Calamian deer, dark-coated (tawny, brown, rusty) is the norm. Interestingly, for male deers, the coat goes even darker as they grow older. Besides that, the species has a light patch of fur just below the throat. They have rounded ears and inner ears are white in coloration. These animals exhibit bushy tails along with largely dark legs.

Populations of the Calamian deer have been declining for some time now.
*Please note that this is a picture of the hog deer, not a Calamian deer. If you have an image of a Calamian deer please let us know at

How cute are they?

Compared to any other type of deer, Calamian deer will rank quite high in the cuteness quotient in our opinion. The way this deer species are known to put the head down like hogs while running is considered to be cute by many.

How do they communicate?

The only known vocalization that the deer endemic to the Calamian Islands produce is a high-pitched nasal call that comes out very slowly. Apart from this, a deer can also send signals to the others in its herd or family by using the tail.  

How big is a Calamian deer?

Calamian deer, as you can have already understood by now, are stocky in their appearance. The height that this deer reaches is around 2-2.5 ft (0.6-0.7 m), while the head to tail length of the Calamian deer hovers around 3.5 ft (1 m). In contrast, the fallow deer are much longer and slightly taller than them.

How fast can a Calamian deer run?

While we do not know how fast a Calamian deer can run, this species from the Palawan islands in the Philippines have a peculiar fleeing motion. Instead of jumping over barriers, the Calamian deer will put its head down and dart through the undergrowth in a manner similar to hogs.

How much does a Calamian deer weigh?

The stocky Calamian deer has a weight that ranges from anywhere between 79-110 lb (35.8-49.8 kg).

What are the male and female names of the species?

Any male deer will be known by either the name 'stag' or 'buck', while a female deer is known by the moniker 'doe'.

What would you call a baby Calamian deer?

Baby or juvenile Calamian deer will be simply known as the fawn.

What do they eat?

As all species of deer in the hog deer family are herbivores, the Calamian deer is no different. They primarily feed on shoots, leaves, grasses, and twigs. Now interestingly, the Calamian hog deer are considered to be ruminants. This means that they have four chambers in their stomach and are known to regurgitate food that they have already chewed.

Are they dangerous?

No, of course not. The Calamian deer is a very gentle and docile animal that will flee at the first sign of humans or other predators.

Would they make a good pet?

Unfortunately, you cannot keep the endangered Calamian deer as your pet. These are wild animals and wouldn't react well to being domesticated. While they are kept in zoo habitats around the world, a large zoo enclosure is much suited to them than a house.

Did you know...

The antlers of the Calamian deer are attached to the pedicels on their foreheads. These pedicels are a support structure that grows as an enlargement of the frontal bone in the skull.

The other amazing fact about the Calamian deer is that even though their internal structure resembles any other deer, the organs in their body are very similar to that of humans.

The Calamian deer don't have many predators apart from the usual suspects: hawks and snakes.

Why Calamian deer is endangered?

The Calamian deer is endangered due to recreational hunting and habitat loss that takes place on the Calamian Islands.

Is Calamian Deer endemic?

This species of deer is endemic to the Calamian Islands in the Philippines.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these saiga antelope facts and Mexican wolf facts for kids.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable leaf deer coloring pages.



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