A complete history of the establishment of Japanese sika deer on the Delmarva Peninsula: 100 years post-introduction
Summer food habits of Sika deer (Cervus nippon yakushimae) on Yakushima Island, southern Japan, were studied focusing in particular onPseudosasa owatarii, a dwarf bamboo native to the island. Fecal analyses showed that the food habit of the Sika deer on Yakushima island was plastic: the dietary composition was dominated by graminoids (ca. 90%), particularlyP. owatarii (50%–60%) in the bamboo grassland of theP. owatarii zone above the timber line, whereas leaves and non-leafy parts of woody plants were important in the crytomeria forest and evergreen broad-leaved forest below the timber line. The maximum culm age ofP. owatarii was 8.5 yr, but the majority of leaves (97.8%) were younger than 2.5 yr. Since the weight contribution of the leaves is great (27.7%) and the turnover rate is high, theP. owatarii grassland affords a good foraging place for the Sika deer on Yakushima Island.