White-lipped deer

Latin Name
Cervus albirostris




White-lipped deer gain their name from the white markings visible beneath the mouth and down the throat. The species has a brown coat that gets thicker during winter to provide added warmth. One of the largest deer species, the white-lipped deer can reach six feet in length and six hundred pounds. Males possess an imposing set of antlers, which can be as large as four feet in size. These antlers are shed and regrown each mating season.



The white-lipped deer inhabits the Tibetan Plateau of western China.


The white-lipped deer is vulnerable in the wild due to hunting and habitat loss. Lincoln Park Zoo cooperatively manages white-lipped deer populations with other institutions in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.


A mountainous species, the white-lipped deer occupies high-altitude forests and meadows.


An herbivorous mammal, the white-lipped deer feeds principally on grasses.

Life History

White-lipped deer spend much of the year traveling in single-sex herds. These male and female herds congregate during fall breeding season, gathering in groups of up to 300 individuals. Males compete intensely to gain access to breeding females. Young deer are able to walk within an hour of being born, but they spend much of their time hiding in sight of their mothers. If a predator approaches, female deer will attempt to draw it away from offspring by running in the opposite direction.

ARKive Media

ARKive image - Female Thorold's deer portraitARKive image - Female Thorold's deer showing heavy neck maneARKive image - Thorold's deer stag

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Lincoln Park Zoo Exhibit