And, darling, what big teeth you have!
I was thinking the folks at the Wildlife Conservation Society just put out this press release to have a little fun at Halloween. But it’s based on a new study in the October issue of the journal Oryx (also apparently feeling the Halloween spirit) and the species Moschus cupreus is apparently real, and poachers know it:
More than 60 years after its last confirmed sighting, a strange deer with vampire-like fangs still persists in the rugged forested slopes of northeast Afghanistan according to a research team led by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), which confirmed the species presence during recent surveys.
Known as the Kashmir musk deer – one of seven similar species found in Asia – the last scientific sighting in Afghanistan was believed to have been made by a Danish survey team traversing the region in 1948. The study was published in the Oct. 22nd edition of the journal Oryx. Authors include: Stephane Ostrowski and Peter Zahler of the Wildlife Conservation Society, Haqiq Rahmani of the University of Leeds, and Jan Mohammad Ali and Rita Ali of Waygal, Nuristan, Afghanistan.
The species is categorized as Endangered on the IUCN Red List due to habitat loss and poaching. Its scent glands are coveted by wildlife traffickers and are